SETI METEOR EXPLODES IN SKY ABOVE NEW ZEALAND


Larry Klaes (lklaes@bbn.com)
Wed, 07 Jul 1999 10:15:01 -0400


>From: Benny J Peiser <b.j.peiser@livjm.ac.uk>
>Sender: humbpeis@livjm.ac.uk
>To: cambridge-conference@livjm.ac.uk
>Subject: METEOR EXPLODES IN SKY ABOVE NEW ZEALAND
>Date: Wed, 7 Jul 1999 14:16:10 -0400 (EDT)
>Priority: NORMAL
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>
>METEOR EXPLODES IN SKY ABOVE NEW ZEALAND
>
>(MODERATOR'S NOTE: TAURID METEOR STREAM MOST LIKELY CULPRIT)
>
>>From CNN Interactive
>http://cnn.com/WORLD/asiapcf/
>
>July 7, 1999
>Web posted at: 6:29 AM EDT (1029 GMT)
>
>WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) -- A meteor exploded in the sky
>above New Zealand on Wednesday, casting an eerie blue light and
>showering the earth with fragments from space, authorities and witnesses
>said.
>
>No injuries were reported, but authorities were flooded with hundreds
>of calls from people who reported seeing the streaking meteor,
>emergency services said.
>
>The Carter Observatory in Wellington said the explosion occurred
>about 4:15 p.m. (0615 GMT) and was followed by smoke in the sky _ and
>a flood of phone calls from witnesses.
>
>"It was picked up by aircraft and on radar, so we've had some air
>traffic controllers calling too," said John Field, the observatory's
>public programs officer.
>
>Police said hundreds of people reported seeing a bright streak across
>the sky over a remote part of New Zealand's North Island, between the
>cities of Napier, 186 miles (300 kilometers) north of the capital,
>Wellington, on the east coast and New Plymouth, about the same
>distance from Wellington, on the west coast.
>
>With a loud explosion, the meteor apparently broke up in the
>atmosphere, leaving a vapor trail and blue cloud hanging in the sky,
>the police spokesman said, on customary condition of anonymity.
>
>Brendon Bradley, an instructor with the New Plymouth Aero Club, said
>he was in the air when he saw the meteor streak over the top of his
>plane. "It was just a bright light, exactly like a flare," he said.
>"Afterwards there was smoke in the sky."
>
>Other witnesses described a bright flash, followed by an explosion and a
>cloud of brown smoke. "A big fiery ball came down. There was a
>terrific red glow and it sort of went pop," said Eric Ray, a resident
>of the town of Te Aroha. One man told police the explosion sounded
>like a natural gas tanker igniting, the police spokesman said.
>
>Field said the meteor could have been either metal or rock and was
>probably as big a a car. A rock meteor would have broken up as it
>came through the atmosphere and broken into a shower of stones, he
>said. He said that throughout the world about one meteor falls to
>Earth each week.
>
>Police said reports of objects seen falling to the ground were received from
>across the region. Night has since fallen, and there were no reports
>of any pieces being found.
>
>Copyright 1999 The Associated Press.
>
>
>



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