Saturday, March 23, 2013

Meteor sighting reported from Florida to Maine

Flash in East Coast sky has social media buzzing

UPDATED 11:12 PM EDT Mar 22, 2013

This meteor was photographed over Australia in 2011.

BOSTON —Social media sites are buzzing with reports of a flash of light streaking across the sky along the East Coast.


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Twitter was exploding Friday evening with reports of meteor sightings from the South to New England.

See a slideshow of the Russian meteor strike

Donald Yeomans, manager of NASA's Near-Earth Object Program in Pasadena, Calif., said he's aware of the reports and that they appear to be consistent with a meteor shower.

(I was) "Driving south on Route 495 near Bolton, Mass., and just saw a huge meteorite cross the sky, bluish green with a long white tail, lasted about 10 seconds and burned up in the atmosphere," wrote Bill Dorazio on WCVB-TV's Facebook page.

Yeomans told The Associated Press that he didn't know the cause of the Friday night sightings. He said meteor showers are not that rare, but added "it's unusual to have so many people see it."

Robert Lunsford of the American Meteor Society told USA Today "it basically looked like a super bright shooting star." The society had over 300 sightings reported on its website.

"I was driving and it stood out very bright compared to the fading light. It had a long tail. I have never seen anything like it. It appeared to be close," wrote Massachusetts resident Matthew C., who said he was driving from Dartmouth to Pocasset.

Yeomans said meteor showers don't typically reach the ground. He said they're generally made up of chunks of asteroids that enter the earth's atmosphere, and if small enough, "burn up after putting on a good show."


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