Skip to comments.Large Meteorite Hits Near Columbia CA at 7:55AM, Several Fires Reported
Posted on 04/22/2012 10:56:12 AM PDT by .454Puma
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Lyrid meteor shower?
Loud bang a meteor?
Written by Craig Cassidy, The Union DemocratApril 22, 2012 07:56 am
A chunk of meteor flew over the Central Sierra foothills on Sunday morning, rattling windows and nerves from Placerville and Groveland, to Modesto and Reno.
The loud bang was heard about 8 a.m.
It was followed by a shower of phone calls to fire and law enforcement agencies throughout the region.
A national warning system, called NAWAS, a phone-tree connecting law enforcement and other public-safety agencies across the country, had earlier put out a notice regarding meteor sightings, according to a Sheriff’s Office dispatcher in Tuolumne County.
Stefanie Henry, meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Sacramento, said meteor sightings were also reported to the state’s version of NAWAS, called CAWAS.
Most were from Southern California, including a big one in Orange County, she said, adding meteor reports came from as far away as the Eastern European republic of Hungary.
The meteors are the product of the Lyrid meteor shower.
The Earth passes though it each year, and this year’s pass was particularly vivid, Henry said.
In the western U.S., the shower peaked about 5 pm. Saturday, she said.
The meteors are floating space debris left by comet Thatcher, which last passed earth in July 1861.
As comets pass the Earth in their routes around the sun, they shed ice and pieces of rock.
When the Earth makes its annual circle around the sun, it collides with the space junk.
Meteors typically vaporize when they fly at supersonic speed through the Earth’s atmosphere resulting in a bright flash and, in some instaces, a sonic boom like that of a jet fighter.
As of now, Henry said, it doesn’t appear anything reached the ground.
Cal Fire communications officer Maryjo Boon, in Calaveras County, said there was no confirmation that anything hit, though many people thought something must have.
Reports of fires in the Big Hill area of Tuolumne County around the same time were confirmed to be property owners’ private burn piles.
“We received reports of people’s windows rattling and doors coming open,” she said, adding that calls came from Mountain Ranch, Groveland, Tuttetown and Phoenix Lake.
One witness in Arnold told The Democrat that trees were briefly swept from west to east.
Another said she was knocked off her feet.
“I was walking down the stairs in the garage when the whatever happened,” said Arnold’s Erin Girard-Hudson.
“It knocked me off my feet and was shaking the house,” she said, adding her daughter, Elsie, 2, was crying. “It sounded like it was next door.”
Taunya Day Struhs, of Pine Grove, Amador County, was rattled as well.
“Our windows vibrated, we were stymied as to what it was. So bizarre,” she said by email.
Jasmin Yager, of Salida, who just turned 6, actually saw the meteor’s bright flash when she was outside.
“She said she saw a big beautiful bird. It was a red one with lots of rainbows,” said mother, Monica Yager.
“My husband and I were literally having coffee and donuts... We were like, ‘Oh, OK honey.’ “
Scott Bright, of Placeville, said the sound seemed to come from the west.
“It started to rumble then it built incredible energy like direct hit thunder bolt, then staged-rocket sounds across the sky. In 53 seconds, it was gone,” he said. “It was the loudest thing I ever heard. It screamed across the sky thousands of miles per hour,” he said.
“We’re lucky it didn’t hit. ... When it happens, you better call the friends you love. I thought we were gone.”
Union Democrat reporter Sean Janssen contributed to this report.
Did it come in over San Francisco? Did anyone hear a voice from the sky? “Missed it by THAT much...”
That weird looking guy with the far out hair doo on Ancient Aliens, I have had it with him and that show. Everything that has ever happened good or bad from the beginning of time is because of “extra terrestrials”! I remain unconvinced! LOL!
Perhaps you meant to reply to the aurhor of the thread hadline and not me?
Many of the alien believers have made the aliens into their saving gods. They talk to the ufo’s they see and think the “ships” respond to them by blinking or moving. It’s different.
Hour from there, Heard nothing. And yes I was awake and outside. It was Sunday getting ready for Church, no one in Church said a thing about it. We all live 40 to 60 miles from the area.
Missed by 3000 miles.
Umm... You forgot to post driving directions with your invitation to dinner. ;-)
100 kilometer/second = 223,693.629 mile/hour (mph)
Including a beautiful complexion. And, you have to admit, his hair always looks really clean...
You know. 176,000 mps. It's not just a good idea. It's the law.
It was heavenly. In a noisy and sulphurous way (later).
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