Giant Fireball Streaked Over Northeastern US This Week

The fireballs making surprise appearances in the sky have been happening in the U.S. lately (though the ones that crop up in Russia are usually much more exciting), and the latest one happened this week. The fireball was spotted by night owls in a few northeastern states, with most of the sightings seeming to come from the Boston region. The event was caught on camera by a few witnesses.

This fireball was very bright and moved fairly slow, making for some nice videos. The video below arguably shows it best, though it is from a surveillance camera at the Burlington International Airport, and so the video resolution is pretty low. By Tuesday, the American Meteor Society says it had received more than 700 reports from witnesses.

The fireball appeared a bit before 1AM on May 17, with AMS saying most of the reports it received were from Maine. Others who saw it report having been in New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Quebec, and Ontario at the time.

Here's a video from a police cruiser camera:

AMS estimated the ground trajectory being in eastern Maine, but determines that based on the reports it gets. Most interesting, though, is that some videos show two objects streaking through the sky rather than one, with one of the objects being very small and therefore easier to miss.

These two objects mean the meteor broke fairly significantly before making its way into the atmosphere. According to witnesses, the larger fireball seemed to burn up as it reached the treeline, though that perspective depends on where someone was when they witnessed the event. At least one witness in Maine reports having felt a "boom" so strong that it shook his house.

SOURCE: American Meteor Society