Science

Reports of bright fireball over Michigan, 12 other states

Reports of bright fireball over Michigan, 12 other states

Footage of the fireball, seen here spreading over Pittsburgh on the night of Thursday, December 1st. The fireball has been reported in more than ten states, as well as in Canada. Video by Jared Rackley, via American Meteor Society.

A bright fireball lit up the night sky over parts of Michigan and a dozen other eastern U.S. states Thursday night, according to the American Meteor Society.

AMS has received so far more than 800 fireball reports seen around 7.30pm on Thursday 1st December. The sightings covered a range extending more than 700 miles from north to south, from Saginaw Bay in Michigan to South Carolina.

Nearly two dozen reports came in from eastern Michigan, where sightings were in or near Ann Arbor, metro Detroit, Flint, Saginaw, Bay City and the Thumb.

Fireball seen in Berkeley, Mich. Video by Al Holland K8ALH, via the American Meteor Society.

In AMS reports, witnesses described the fireball as low and slow, and some viewers claimed the fireball was visible for an incredible seven seconds.

A report from North Carolina described it as “One of the most impressive and long-lasting fireballs I have witnessed”.

One onlooker in Michigan wrote: “I thought it was the cutest thing ever, so great and it looked so close.”

Fireballs are unusually bright meteors that can be seen over a very wide area. Thursday night’s fireball could probably be attributed to the Geminid meteor shower, which is currently underway and will intensify until it peaks on December 14th.

According to AMS, fireballs are reported every day. A fireball event is described by AMS as “major” when it collects more than 30 reports.

States with reports of this particular fireball include Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, North Carolina, South Carolina, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia. Sightings have also been reported in Ontario.

To learn more or report a fireball, visit ammeteors.org.

RELATED: Meteor shower over Lake Superior: Photographer captures magical shot of fireball



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