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Weather Service Issues Alert for Falling Satellite Debris

Fireball

The sky is falling!

A fireball that was caught on film over Austin, Texas, seen and reported by many, was possibly thought to be debris from two satellites that collided in orbit last week.

However, Dallas' WFAA reported this morning that the debris was unrelated to the satellite collision. Said Major Regina Winchester, with the U.S. Strategic Command: "There is no correlation between the debris from that collision and those reports of re-entry."

In Kentucky on Friday night, however, (via slog) an alert was issued by NOAA's National Weather Service Weather Forecast Office for Jackson, Kentucky, warning residents about explosions and earthquakes caused by debris from space:

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE JACKSON KY
1145 PM EST FRI FEB 13 2009

...POSSIBLE SATELLITE DEBRIS FALLING ACROSS THE REGION...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN JACKSON HAS RECEIVED CALLS THIS
EVENING FROM THE PUBLIC CONCERNING POSSIBLE EXPLOSIONS AND...OR
EARTHQUAKES ACROSS THE AREA. THE FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION HAS
REPORTED TO LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT THAT THESE EVENTS ARE BEING CAUSED
BY FALLING SATELLITE DEBRIS. THESE PIECES OF DEBRIS HAVE BEEN CAUSING
SONIC BOOMS...RESULTING IN THE VIBRATIONS BEING FELT BY SOME
RESIDENTS...AS WELL AS FLASHES OF LIGHT ACROSS THE SKY. THE CLOUD OF
DEBRIS IS LIKELY THE RESULT OF THE RECENT IN ORBIT COLLISION OF TWO
SATELLITES ON TUESDAY...FEBRUARY 10TH WHEN KOSMOS 2251 CRASHED INTO
IRIDIUM 33.

Watch film of the Austin, Texas fireball, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Comments

  1. This kind of re-entry has always been a threat to us. But for those satellites which collided in space.. its not possible for debris to enter so late.

    Posted by: Top news | Feb 16, 2009 12:39:32 PM


  2. The NWS statement does not say that there will be "explosions and earthquakes caused by debris from space", as your gloss claims.

    The statement says that satellite fragments cause vibrations, with the implication that those vibrations might be mistaken for earthquakes. Clearly the NWS knows that small impacts will not cause actual earthquakes.

    Posted by: Col.Jack | Feb 16, 2009 5:11:09 PM


  3. I am particularly impressed by the illiteracy demonstrated by CNN in their screen graphic. Apparently their designer never made it past sixth-grade English.

    Posted by: Marc | Feb 16, 2009 6:39:08 PM


  4. After a few nights of drinking at a choice South Austin bar, I can fully say I've never heard of this "debris" on the news, or internet (until now)...so I'm going to enjoy my Lone Stars and be grateful I am drinking cheap Texas beer instead of listening to a snippet of (national?) news. Goodnight, and God Bless!!!

    Posted by: Courtney | Feb 17, 2009 3:57:36 AM


  5. The NWS headline also said that it may be debris, not that it emphatically was. The FAA initially said that the Texas fireball was satellite debris without confirming that it was from the impact (fishy). It later retracted the Texas claim, as well.

    Posted by: satori | Feb 17, 2009 9:28:40 AM


  6. First we get an outbreak of nazi zombies, now this?!? Awesomeness!

    Posted by: fremenalex | Feb 17, 2009 2:03:21 PM


  7. Hey whats the difference between a virtual office and real office? Does that mean I own the virtual office too? Is there space allocated?

    Posted by: savantadmin | Feb 19, 2009 11:33:33 PM


  8. ohhhh yeassssssssssss

    Posted by: penis büyütücü | Dec 14, 2010 6:14:38 AM


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