A sonic boom was overheard and felt across the eastern U.S. during the day. Researchers believe the likely cause was due to a disintegrating meteor, according to an organization in western New York that tracked the event.
Numerous witnesses across the northeast coast reported both seeing a fireball in the sky and hearing a booming sound around noon on Wednesday, Robert Lunsford of the American Meteor Society in Geneseo stated in a post published detailing the incident.
The American Meteor Society (AMS) recorded more than 150 reports of the fireball that were seen in at least seven states. The group stated the fireball was primarily seen in New York and Ontario but they had also collected reports from witnesses who saw the fireball in – Maryland, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.
Lunsford told WTVH that he estimated that the fireball could have been the size of a small car, moving at least 10 miles per second. When it disintegrated 22 miles above the surface in western New York, it produced a bright light. A camera on the CN Tower in Toronto captured a huge mysterious flash of light across the sky which was posted by EarthCam.
ABC News reports, the meteor was going a whopping 56,000 miles per hour when it broke into pieces. However, before the meteor fell into shards, it caused quite the stir. Residents in New York contacted local police and media after hearing the “loud boom,” according to the AMS. In fact, the noise was so loud that it shook windows, the Associated Press reported.
“Loud, far-reaching booms happen when meteors rip through the atmosphere,” Lunsford told Syracuse.coml
NASA confirmed the incident in a Facebook post stating that the objects “slow speed suggests it had an asteroidal origin.”
Last month another meteor was seen across the U.S. east coast, with over 200 reports of a fireball received in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Delaware, Maryland, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, Québec and Canada, according to AMS.
Typically a very bright fireball penetrating the stratosphere, below an altitude of about 30 miles which explodes as a bolide, has a chance to cause sonic booms which will then be felt on the ground.
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