Though it may resemble the makings of a horrific sci-fi blockbuster setup, this astronomical event wasn’t immediately followed by devastating earthquakes that force mankind to relocate to the moon. However, we did capture a few seconds of prime footage in the skies over Portland, Maine lighting up right before the fireball crashed through our atmosphere. The Portland Police Department’s dashcam was able to capture this rare fireball’s abrupt but brilliant flight early on Tuesday morning.
The American Meteor Society indicates that while these types of events are quite common. However, they are typically a rarity to behold. AMS’s operations manager, Mike Hankey informed the public that these “fireballs,” which in fact are the correct astronomical term, happen routinely as debris impacts Earth’s atmosphere creating friction and heat.
Hankey went on to say, “Debris from space hits Earth all the time. The bigger the debris, the bigger the flash of light.”
According to the video, this instance’s debris was more than likely a portion of an asteroid measuring approximately the size of a car. After receiving a number of eye witness reports of sonic boom followed by a flame show, AMS reveals that the fireball penetrated deep into our Earth’s atmosphere. Furthermore, the meteorites that fell to Earth consequently were believed to be harmless according to Hankey.
Those who were able to see the show in person, should definitely count their lucky stars however. As Hankey states: “These are totally harmless events and they happen every day on the planet. But for an individual to see something like this is a once in a lifetime thing – just the odds of you being in the right place at the right time.”
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