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US: Multiple Eyewitness Reports of Fireball Sightings off Atlantic Coast

Summary: On March 29th, 2009, at approximately 9:45 pm EDT, people along the Atlantic coast of the USA between Maryland and North Carolina witnessed bright lights in the sky and heard thunderous rumbles. It was probably a meteoritic fireball--a small, random asteroid entering Earth's atmosphere and exploding. Although the event was widely seen (and even more widely heard), it was not widely photographed. Onlookers did not have time to grab their cameras before the meteor disappeared.

Eyewitness Accounts:

Location: Virginia Beach, Virginia

Comments: Mark Ost: "I am an amateur astronomer. I witnessed the fireball last night during an observing session. At approximately 2130 I witnessed the entry and what appeared to be an explosion of the bolide. The fireball was approximately 36 to 40 degrees above the horizon. I know this due to my telescope alignment and familiarity with the location of Polaris. The bolide was traveling in a north east direction. Initially the trace was the bright green of an ionization trail. The bolide then turned brilliant white fringed with an orange rim. I timed the arrival of the sound to two minutes after seeing the object explode and extinguish itself. I am located in southern Virginia Beach, Back Bay. Assuming the speed of sound at 600 mph, I calculated the distance to be 20 to 30 miles (direct line of sight) away. The event was also witnessed by Kent Blackwell, a very experienced amateur astronomer."

Comment: See: Atlantic Coast Fireball could not have been body of Russian Rocket?


Meteor

US: Atlantic Coast Fireball could not have been body of Russian Rocket

Last night, March 29th around 9:45 pm EDT, people along the Atlantic coast of the USA from Maryland to North Carolina witnessed bright lights in the sky and heard thunderous booms. It was probably a meteoritic bolide--a random asteroid hitting Earth's atmosphere and exploding in flight.

Another possibility is being discussed as well: A spent Russian rocket body reentered the atmosphere on March 29th. According to data published by US Strategic Command, the rocket reentry happened near Taiwan (24° N, 125° E) more than two hours after the Atlantic Coast event.

Meteor

US: NUFORC Advisory - Dramatic Fireball Over Eastern U. S. at 21:44 hrs (EDT) on Sunday Night, March 29, 2009

NUFORC has received a number of telephone calls, as well as written reports, of a dramatic fireball that was seen at approximately 21:44 hrs. (EDT) on Sunday night, March 29, 2009.

One witness in South Hill, Virginia, reported having been witness to a large fireball, its apparent size larger than the apparent size of the full Moon, in the eastern sky, which lasted for a few seconds.

Sherlock

US: The big boom in Stamford remains a mystery (1999)

When the boom hit shortly before 10 p.m. on an autumn night a decade ago, a security guard at First Union Bank on Main Street thought robbers were breaking in.

The desk sergeant thought something exploded at police headquarters on Bedford Street.

Stamford Emergency Medical Service workers thought someone drove into their Strawberry Hill Avenue building.

At Curley's Diner downtown, the manager thought someone fell in the bathroom.

A woman who lived near Stamford Hospital thought her child pulled over a dresser.

Meteor

Australia: Meteor theory for spectacular sky show

The source of a long trail of lights seen by many Tasmanians speeding across the sky yesterday afternoon remained unknown last night.

Tasmania Police switchboards were inundated with phone calls from across the state about 1.30pm -- all from people concerned about the lights which appeared to be heading downwards as they headed south.

Police told the Sunday Tasmanian the sightings had triggered fears that a plane or a meteor was about to crash to the ground.

Some callers had thought distress flares were being let off.

Meteor

US: Morning boom probably meteor, University of South Carolina-Aiken astronomer says

You weren't imagining things if you heard a loud boom between 2 and 3 a.m. this morning.

Dr. Gary Senn, director of the Dupont Planetarium in the Ruth Patrick Science Education Center at USC Aiken, says it was a large meteor, technically called a bolide.

"We've had a couple of calls this morning from people," he said. "It seems like a few people were outside and actually saw the thing itself. Others reported hearing the sound."

He said people have reported the sound to be like a clap of thunder. Sightings were of a large fireball in the sky.

Meteor

England: Was 'burning fireball' in the sky a UFO?

Paranormal investigators are looking into reports of a mysterious UFO seen flying over Pitsea.

A woman and her son witnessed the "burning fireball" whizzing across the sky at the speed of an aeroplane.

The 40-year-old was driving in Ashlyns, Pitsea, with her son, aged 20, when she spied the spectacle on the horizon at 8.30pm on Friday.

The woman, from Pitsea, said: "We couldn't believe it. We actually pulled over to watch it. It seemed to be near to the Barstable School area.

Meteor

US: Big Boom Heard in Alabama

News 5 has received reports from Spanish Fort to the Mississippi state line about a big boom that shook their homes. We've done some digging, but so far, no one has an answer for us.

The National Weather Service had no reports and suggested we check with the US Geological Survey.

The USGS is not showing any signs of seismic activity in our area. In fact, the closest earthquake to Mobile within the past week was 718 miles away in Sullivan, Missouri on Saturday night.

Meteor

Boom Goes the Meteor?

The loud boom many southern Westchester residents heard Saturday morning might have been caused by a meteor traveling through the atmosphere.

Bill Thys of the Rockland Astronomy Club said there was a very good chance a meteor could have caused the sonic boom, lohud.com reported.

Meteor

US: Another mystery boom wakes people in Rockland County New York

A second loud boom may have rattled windows in parts of Rockland County yesterday - and its origin remains as mysterious as the explosive noise that blew through southern Westchester County over the weekend.

"It was about 5:15 a.m., and it woke up the whole house," said Nanuet resident Keith Wallenstein. "The house was shaking. It sounded like someone had flown an F-16 over the house."

"If it was thunder, it had to be right on the house," Wallenstein said. "And I know a bunch of people who heard it within 3 to 4 or 5 miles away. So I don't know if it was thunder."

Spokesmen at several Rockland police departments said they were not aware of any reports of loud booms early Monday morning.

Comment: With all of the meteor/fireball sightings there have been, and even recorded, you would think that comments like the one above:
Taylor said. "It is possible that something in the atmosphere can do that, but it is very rare. But her seeing it moving in a downward arc would be an optical illusion. You would not be able to see that.
There have been a lot of "sonic booms" or "loud noises" reported over the last couple of years, and very, very few have had anyone even whisper that it might be a meteor exploding in the atmosphere, or creating a sonic boom as it streaks through the skies.

However, there was this very recent article that someone did finally admit that the Hudson Valley "sonic boom" could have been a meteor.

It's as if it is forbidden to even think that meteors could be to blame for these "sonic booms". Amazing, isn't it?