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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 1997 > Oct > Oct 10

Re: More on that Texas Meteor

From: RSchatte@aol.com {Rebecca Schatte]
Date: Fri, 10 Oct 1997 04:40:59 -0400 (EDT)
Fwd Date: Fri, 10 Oct 1997 22:05:02 -0400
Subject: Re: More on that Texas Meteor

.c The Associated Press

EL PASO, Texas (AP) - A meteor flashing across the sky Thursday sent a ripple
of fear through West Texas, where alarmed residents flooded police lines with
reports of an explosion, a shuddering boom and a burst of smoke.

Many whose homes shook feared it was a plane crash.

The meteor appeared at 12:47 p.m. as a streak about as bright as the surface
of a setting sun, said Robert Simpson, a spokesman for the University of
Texas' McDonald Observatory. Sightings also were reported in New Mexico.

``It was like a chunk of the sun had fallen off and was heading toward the
Earth. It might be golf-ball size at best or larger,'' said Simpson, who saw
it from his home near Fort Davis, 175 miles southeast of El Paso.

A police helicopter flying about 25 miles east of the city spotted about an
acre of scorched land that authorities believe might be the area where the
meteor hit, police spokesman Bill Pfeil said.

It was not clear if any fragments were found.

Simpson said the reports from throughout the El Paso area were all consistent
with a daytime meteor, also known as a fireball or bolide.

``It shook the whole damn neighborhood,'' said Tom Tyra, a Horizon City
resident. ``Everybody came out of their house.''

When he went outside to investigate the noise, he saw a cloud of smoke about
3,000 feet in the air.

While some saw a flash of light, others heard only the boom or what sounded
like debris raining down on their roofs, though there was nothing to be found
on the ground.

The sightings varied.

``All I saw was the explosion and the smoke,'' said Enrique Magallanes,
assistant chief of the Socorro Fire Department. ``I did call some other
agencies and they also had reports, but nobody could confirm anything. We
couldn't even send out any fire trucks or anything.''

A meteor is the streak of light that occurs when a meteoroid, a chunk of
stony or metallic matter, enters the Earth's atmosphere from space. Friction
with the air causes the meteoroid to heat up, creating a glow and leaving a
trail of glowing gases.

AP-NY-10-09-97 2129EDT


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