Translated by reader

After reports of an alleged fall of a fireball associated with a meteor shower over the weekend in Campinas, now it's Itatiba's turn to be subject to searches for evidence of meteorite fragments. The suspicion is that this object may have crashed into someone's property in the city last Monday. Astronomer Julio Lobo was on location throughout the day yesterday and believes this hypothesis, especially given the characteristics of the fall witnessed by the caretaker of a property. After Correio published a story about the fireball, the editorial staff has received six e-mails from readers reporting that they saw this very bright event. The astronomer explained that the phenomena in Campinas and Itatiba have no relation with each other, but the two incidents indicate that the sky is "busy."

According to the caretaker Jose Oliveira dos Santos, 52, on Monday afternoon, around 2.30 pm, he heard a noise like a jet and then a strong thump on the ground a few meters from his house, on the hill. "There's a flight corridor here, but this buzz was different. It was a sort of whistling at a rapid speed and then it diminished, with a very strong noise. I saw nothing, only listened. After the crash, I saw the fire and immediately phoned the owners of the grange," he said. For the astronomer, this account is considered "classic" of cases in which meteorite falls have been recorded, such as in the city of Varre-Sai, Rio de Janeiro, two years ago. Besides the information of the witness, Lobo listed other evidence.

During his research, which included eyewitness reports, Lobo noticed that a string of high-voltage power lines, which cross the property, were damaged. Moreover, the possible fall of the object caused a "flash" in the forest across a span 300 meters in diameter. The astronomer has concluded that the glowing meteorite arrived and caught fire, causing the burned area. "Regarding the type of damage in the wire, it can't have been done by a bird, for example. And burning can not be caused by a spark or short-circuit in the power cables, since the wires don't touch. And even if they do touch, the branches of the tallest trees would have to be completely dry."

Despite the evidence presented, the astronomer did not find any fragments of the meteorite on site.Lobo plans to return with a team with metal detectors and other equipment to scan in a new area nearby. The place where the supposed meteorite fell is very difficult to access. It's a steep walk through dense forest and it is virtually impossible to find on the ground. After the caretaker called the owners, they contacted the Fire Department of Jundiaí, which also received the support of firefighters from Itatiba. Despite the access difficulties, the emergency team of the Municipal Fire Department went to the location indicated by the eyewitnesses, believing it to be a plane crash, but nothing was found, only the fires. The helicopter Águia, of the Military Police (MP) from Campinas, also scanned the site, but found nothing.


Fireball event this weekend in Campinas - Businessman Igor Okimoto, 32, reported that at dawn on Sunday, he and his girlfriend had seen something of a falling star shining down toward the Technical School of Campinas (Etec). They walked along the Avenue Car Dr. Heitor Penteado, around 3.33 am.

The emails received from readers of Correio also reported the sighting of this type of object at the same time and day as the couple.