What was It ?

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What was It ?

Postby curiosity on January 4th, 2018, 1:10 pm 

I believe I had a rather close encounter with what I'm guessing was either a small meteorite or small piece of space junk. I was on my way to to work last night and I was driving along a straight and level stretch of four lane road, I happened to spot what I first thought was the headlight of an approaching motorcycle in my rear view mirror; I realised that this was not the case when what I had thought was a headlight shot past me no more than forty feet to my right and at approximately the same height above the ground (it was below the tree line, which borders the road on both sides.) It faded out about half, maybe three quarters of a mile in front of me, without appearing to make contact with the ground. I was travelling at eighty miles an hour, when it shot past me, I'm estimating that the fireball was about a foot in diameter. I can't think of anything else it might have been. Can you ?

Thoughts please...
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Re: What was It ?

Postby zetreque on January 4th, 2018, 1:15 pm 

Drones are everywhere these days. I see them all the time at night now.
Which can be dangerous drawing peoples attention off of the road.
Apparently the world speed record for a drone is 163mph.
There are videos all over youtube of them harassing vehicle drivers.

So that's one possibility.

http://fpvdronereviews.com/guides/fastest-racing-drones/
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Re: What was It ?

Postby curiosity on January 4th, 2018, 1:24 pm 

I dont think it could have been a drone... As an ex tank gunner, I'm certain that whatever it was, it was travelling faster than an armour piercing high velocity 120mm round.
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Re: What was It ?

Postby zetreque on January 4th, 2018, 1:26 pm 

Maybe it was a tracer bullet then.
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Re: What was It ?

Postby curiosity on January 4th, 2018, 2:13 pm 

Although that isnt as impossible as it might at first sound. as during training one of the other gunners on the gunnery course I was on fired an APDS round, while sighting with the markings for a low velocity projectile. This resulted in a practice round totally clearing the very large hill down range of the targets. I dont know where that round landed, but I suspect it would have been ten or fifteen miles downrange, maybe more. There are no gunnery ranges within at leat one hundred and fifty miles of the incident though, So I'm going to discount that possibility.
Hmmm, there are several RAF and USAF air bases in this area though. If one of those accidentally lost a piece of ordinance, would they own up to it?
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Re: What was It ?

Postby zetreque on January 4th, 2018, 2:19 pm 

To go along the ground at the angle you are talking about would be unlikely for a meteorite since it would have to have traveled through a great deal of atmosphere at that angle and burned up in doing so.

I was fortunate enough to see the incredibly rare occurrence of ball lightning once immediately following a heavy thunder storm. However it was much larger than what you are describing and traveled a bit slower. I have read encounters with it though that appear quite different than mine. Since I couldn't and still can't believe my own eyes when I saw it, I would lend more leeway in others describing their encounter.
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Re: What was It ?

Postby curiosity on January 4th, 2018, 3:35 pm 

hmm,Just maybe... There is one thing about whatever it was. that didnt quite add up. The whole incident was over very quickly, but I'm reasonably confident that there was no trail of debris (tail) behind the object, which would be unusual for a meteorite. It also began to rain very heavily almost immediately after the event. so likely conditions for some kind of lightning.
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Re: What was It ?

Postby zetreque on January 4th, 2018, 3:40 pm 

Many of the ball lightning stories I have read online sound like cheesy UFO alien garbage. However, some eye witness accounts sound like a real phenomena. Having seen it myself I still don't know what to make of it. I even contacted a guy working for NASA near me to see if he could find anything unusual that night on some sensors they have setup.

When it happened to me I was parked and actually had a camera sitting on the dash board of my truck (the old 35mm film style) but when I saw it, I was so utterly shocked by what I saw that I completely forgot the camera was sitting there in front of me (like a deer in headlights). I drove home in complete disbelief. I looked up what I saw online and that's when I first encountered the term ball lightning.
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Re: What was It ?

Postby doogles on January 4th, 2018, 4:57 pm 

Your description, curiosity, makes it sound as if the 'light' phenomenon was travelling too parallel with the ground to be a fireball, but just in case you haven't seen the following site, it may be worth a look.

This site defines a fireball ( https://cneos.jpl.nasa.gov/fireballs/intro.html ) as an unusually bright meteor that reaches a visual magnitude of -3 or brighter when seen at the observer’s zenith.
Objects causing fireball events can exceed one meter in size. Fireballs that explode in the atmosphere are technically referred to as bolides although the terms fireballs and bolides are often used interchangeably.

There is a Table on the same website providing the estimated speed of travel of many of these objects.

This link on the same website shows a map of all of the world’s recorded Near Earth Objects - https://cneos.jpl.nasa.gov/fireballs/
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Re: What was It ?

Postby BadgerJelly on January 4th, 2018, 10:22 pm 

Probably those pesky aliens again! Why won't they stop meddling in our business?
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Re: What was It ?

Postby curiosity on January 5th, 2018, 8:13 am 

After some deliberation, I can now name what I saw... Without any doubt whatsoever, it was what is commonly referred to as a Dunnowotitwuz. Well... I'm pleased to have cleared that up, rather than have it play on my mind.


On a more serious note, I wish I had captured some images, as that may have helped solve the mystery.
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Re: What was It ?

Postby zetreque on January 5th, 2018, 12:14 pm 

I'd love to be able to afford even a cheap dashcam video recorder. With so many crazies out there, including police, it would be great to have some video evidence of some sort if something happens.
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Re: What was It ?

Postby curiosity on January 5th, 2018, 3:13 pm 

I'd love to be able to afford even a cheap dashcam video recorder. With so many crazies out there, including police, it would be great to have some video evidence of some sort if something happens.


The use of mobile phone cameras, plus the internet, have made whats happening in other parts of the world.much more accessible. I must admit to being so absolutely flabbergasted by the conduct of so many US police officers, that even though I am not an American citizen, I feel I must comment...

Although I presume that the majority of American police officers are honest and mentally well balanced individuals, I have seen so many instances of police misconduct, (which have been recorded then posted on you-tube) that I am dubious about ever re-visiting the U.S. It seems to me that rogue police officers are entitled to shoot and kill whoever they wish to kill, under the pretence that they feared for their own, or the life of a colleague. That those officers can murder without fear of being brought to justice themselves, must be worrying for citizens who live within the jurisdiction of said officers. It's rather ironic that "To serve and protect." is often emblazoned on the sides of the vehicles these people are using.

Maybe I have gained a false impression of US law enforcement, but if not, I'm pleased that I don't live in a country such as the US, which seems to have an increasingly para-military type police force. I couldn't believe what happened at Standing Rock. Do Americans approve of such thuggish behaviour from their police?
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Re: What was It ?

Postby zetreque on January 5th, 2018, 3:25 pm 

This is getting off topic and can be split to a new thread.

My observation leads me to realize that police and military tend to hang out in their own circles reinforcing their patriotism and ideals. Doing so they loose sight of the things and people they are there to protect. Perhaps lack of diversity is the problem here?

Another problem I observe. My recent encounter at the boarder was yet another observation where people live in a tiny bubble worlds. Not only do they only socialize with their own but two boarder agents who appeared to have worked together for many years and done the same job for many years couldn't care less about the duties of the person he works along side.
For example: When I ask a question that you would think would be common and easy to answer question, the response was. I don't know, that's his job (in reference to the guy he works side by side with for years). Normally its good when people say they don't know instead of making up an answer but this was an instance of laziness. I encountered this at my past job where everyone working in the engineering department was happy and content doing their own little tasks without the desire to know related things. When those things came up they didn't know, they were quick to complain and make excuses.
Another example: The invasive species that the guy is claiming to protect us from that he named off are the oldest known problems of 50 plus years ago. He clearly hasn't a clue about cross state or interstate invasive species that are causing billions of dollars of damage. It was astounding that his knowledge of the thing he does was so ancient and limited. Instead he was just profiling and stuck in his lunacy ego trip.

I guess my point is that people tend to associate with like, and they are lazy in that they just live in their own tiny bubble world. This is just as true in the law enforcement field. To them it's a black and white world. Them against us? And to make matters worse, they could easily feel underappreciated. (I'm generalizing)
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Re: What was It ?

Postby zetreque on January 5th, 2018, 3:38 pm 

Also a dashcam would have helped protect my mom against her own insurance company. They used her own words against her in figuring out the claim. They don't care about the facts. All they seemed to care about is how to avoid paying out to fix the problem or increase her rates. We are required by law to have things like insurance that act as our enemies. Not to mention they are making a clear violation of privacy now in determining if to pay you a claim or not. They want to photograph every unrelated part of the car in order to assess "damage."
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Re: What was It ?

Postby curiosity on January 5th, 2018, 4:49 pm 

Its interesting to hear that insurance companies on your side of the pond are probably just as devious as those here in the UK. Trying to avoid paying out, even on genuine claims, is common practice here. taking a customers money is good, paying it out is bad,so attempting to avoid doing so, by any means possible, is considered acceptable behaviour.

We seem to have wandered way off topic here...Maybe we should start a new thread. How about.... "Putting the world to rights," or, "Things that really *iss me off.
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