Meteor strikes might kill people this weekend
Tips by Burleson Consulting
the Perseid meteor shower peaking this weekend, many people
claim that this may be a
good weekend to take-cover from deadly meteorites. This
weekend will see up to 60 meteors falling per hour, some of
which may hit the ground at over a thousand miles per hour.
Here is video simulation of a
meteor strike (Meteorite
film) of what a meteorite impact might look like, if you are
unfortunate enough to be up close. However, meteorite
strikes are quite rare.
Cases of people being
hit by meteorites?
Most folks don't want
to hear about it, but many people have been hit or injured by
falling meteorites. It's interesting that these reports
may be frauds and fakes, since none of these reports has ever
been verified as an actual meteorite strike.
Still, they make interesting
Here is a
newspaper story where two people were killed by a falling
"J. R. Hicks, a
storeheeper, related Saturday that he stood in front of his
store and saw a ball of fire shooting from the sky. It
landed on the roof of William Peator's house he said.
Mrs. William Peator, 43, and Ramond Ford Jr., her one year
old nephew were killed."
newspaper article documents some near-misses and injuries:
"In August 2004
Lowestoft woman Pauline Aguss, 76, was left with a gash on
the arm after being hit by a meteorite."
This article called
Death by Meteorite also notes the risks and newspaper
reports of people being injured and killed by falling meteors:
"A man was struck
by an aerolite and instantly killed. It appears the meteor
had come from a direction a little west or south, and fell
obliquely at an angle of about sixty degrees, for it passed
through a fall maple, cutting the limbs as clean as if it
has been a cannon ball, and then struck him apparently on or
under the shoulder, passing through him obliquely from below
the right shoulder to above the left hip, and buried itself
about two feet in the soft black ground."
close encounter with a meteor was noted in 2005 in Omaha
Nebraska. Watch the
interview with the victim here.
"It came over my
head, probably, about a foot and a half. I could feel the
breeze," Kinzie said. "It was silver and it kind of had red
and black on the back of it and smoke...
I stood here looking at it,
'cause it was still glowing."
newspaper article also notes a near-miss meteorite that
sounded like a thunderclap and buried a meteor several feet
beneath a concrete driveway:
heard the rock that landed in his driveway about three weeks
ago. It sounded like a big thunderclap so he didn't think
much of it at the time.
"I got up in the morning and saw the hole and said, 'What
the hell is that?'"
report says a man missed being killed by a meteorite by only
"Pat Lee was
working outside the Tool Time Rental building on South Main
Street Saturday when he heard a bang. A rock had
struck the south side of the building, about five feet from
where Lee had been working."
The reports of meteor
encounters are plentiful, and
report documents another near-miss with a man:
"Denis Lakic was
awoken when his cat fell out of a tree about 3am and was
outside, trying to tie up his dog, when he heard a whooshing
sound above. "Something banged down on the earth a
couple of metres from me""
Despite the risks of being
killed by a meteorite, thousands of people are planning to watch
the Perseid meteor shower this weekend. Yearly cometary
meteor showers such as Geminids,
Perseids, Leonids, etc. have NEVER produced a verified
meteorite, because the tiny particles do not reach the ground.
The great meteor show
If you want to see the
meteor shower, get away from city lights and witness this
spectacular yearly show, fun for the whole family.
This article explains the amazing meteor show this weekend:
conditions, including years where there is little or no
moonlight during the meteor shower, viewers can expect to
see 50 to 60 meteors per hour. This year, Duncan said
viewers can expect about 10 per hour.
Perseids are fast
meteors and tend to be fairly bright on average. An
occasional fireball is seen, but these seem to depend on the
luck of the draw.
Best viewing window: Saturday evening, August 12, from the
end of evening twilight through Sunday morning, August 13.
Rates for most observers will probably top out at around
15-30 Perseids per hour, with a few sporadic and minor
shower meteors added to the mix. Die-hard observers may be
watching on adjacent nights; unfortunately, there are no
Moon-free periods this year."
While it's clear that
meteor strikes are deadly, they fall randomly and it's quite
rare to be stricken, so you might as
well enjoy the show.