‘A shooting star!’ Videos show bright light flying across sky in NC, SC this morning
Hundreds of reports claim people from Alabama to Virginia — including several in York County — saw fire in the sky Thursday morning.
The American Meteor Society lists 375 reported sightings of a fireball, including eight videos and seven photos. Reports came from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, both Carolinas, Tennessee and Virginia.
Two reports to the AMS came from Fort Mill.
“It had bright blue in the front as it traveled with a long red tail,” reported a viewer named Jason, who estimated the fireball lasted almost four seconds. “At first I thought it may be a comet but too low in the sky and moved really fast.”
A viewer named Robert said there “appeared to be smoke and the tail extended several times the size of the fireball.” Two reports from Rock Hill had the event at more than seven seconds. Large pockets of reported sightings came from metro areas like Charlotte, Greenville, Columbia and Charleston.
An Indian Land community Facebook page asking if anyone saw the fireball near Hall Family Farm at about 6:50 a.m. generated almost 50 comments. Some thought they’d seen a shooting star, joked it was alien craft or lamented having missed it. One woman posted her video doorbell captured it.
“I saw it too!!!” posted Monica Fulkerson. “It was beautiful! What an amazing way to start the day!!”
Fireball is a term for a bright meteor. There are types of fireballs, according to the American Meteor Society, including a bolide which explodes in a bright flash at the end.
Fireballs are unusual sites, but not unique. The American Meteor Society lists 189 events so far in 2019 with at least five reports. One just a day earlier generated 34 reports, mainly from Florida but from as far north as Columbia. Only two of the events this year brought more sightings than the one Thursday, perhaps due to the time of day or its path above larger metro areas.
Based on the reports, the society estimates the fireball traveled east from about the York County and Gaston County, N.C. area to its end flight east of Ivanhoe, N.C.