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Daytime Fireball spotted over Manitoba

Update – 14 Jul 2014: We have received enough reports to tell that the fireball was well north of Winnipeg – the final burnout/explosion likely occurred near the Poplar River area of the eastern shore of Lake Winnipeg. Any surviving fragments of the meteor would have continued north or northeast of this location. Given the difficulty of finding anything in this terrain, we are no longer planning a search and recovery effort.

UPDATE – 10 Jul 2014: We’ve received more than a dozen reports from around southern Manitoba of this rare daytime fireball. Most observers saw it due north, heading almost straight down. This means it was likely quite far north and heading even farther north, although without more observations the details are still hard to pin down. We’re now interested in hearing from anyone who spotted this thing from north of Gimli or anywhere in Westman, or from spots along Lake Winnipeg and into the north. Email [email protected] with your report as outlined below.

Original post – 9 Jul 2014: Details are still coming in, but we have multiple reports of an extremely rare daytime fireball seen in central Manitoba about 11 a.m. Central Time today (Wednesday, 9 July 2014). We are actively seeking reports from people who saw this event, and once we get enough data we will organize a search for pieces.

If you witnessed this object, please email a report to [email protected] and include the following information:

– Your location (as precise as possible; using GPS or a map)

– The direction you were looking at the time of the sighting (north, south, etc)

– the motion of the object ( left-to-right or right-to-left)

– the path of the object (“straight down and angled slightly to the right”, “45 degree angle to horizon”, etc),

– a description of the sighting, including smoke trails, colour, sounds, explosions

– name and telephone number so we can contact you

You should also report your sighting to the American Meteor Society at http://www.amsmeteors.org/members/fireball/report-a-fireball and the International meteor Organization at http://www.imo.net.fireball/report

It is suspected that the parent object was a small asteroid or comet which burned up in the earth’s atmosphere, high enough to do no damage but low enough the pieces may have survived the fall to earth. Any such pieces are not dangerous, will not start fires or scorch the earth, and will not have bubbles or crystals in them.

Further details will be released as they become available.

 

 

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Scott Young

Manager of Science Communications and Visitor Experiences

“Scott is the Planetarium Astronomer at the Manitoba Museum, developing astronomy and science programs. He has been an informal science educator for thirty years, working in the planetarium and science centre field both at The Manitoba Museum and also at the Alice G. Wallace Planetarium in Fitchburg, Massachusetts. Scott is an active amateur astronomer and a past-President of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada.”