Meteor in Wisconsin Sky Causes Panic


US News: Wisconsin Meteor

What has been so eloquently coined as the "fireball in the sky" has been confirmed as a meteor by The National Weather Service. Late Wednesday night around 10pm, the people of Wisconsin spotted a blinding white light streak across the sky, its magnitude so great that it was seen from the surrounding states. Some reports also include hearing a "prolonged sonic boom". Some chalked it up to an impressive shooting star to a falling plane, but many chose a more morbid path of thinking. Because people love to be doomsayers, a flood of calls reached emergency dispatchers and the local law enforcement, panicked witnesses certain that, this time, the end was nigh.

They're probably feeling pretty sheepish right now. The National Weather Service reveals that the Gamma Virginids meteor shower is occuring at this moment, with its peak activity on April 14-15. A larger sized meteorite would've definitely caused a spectacle as the one seen last night. Several other space enthusiasts, including space place director of Wisconsin University James Lattis, are rolling their eyes at the unnecessary commotion that was caused. According to Madison News, "even something relatively small, like the size of a golf ball, will light up the sky when it comes through," he says.

According to a posting on The National Weather Service, "The fireball was seen over the northern sky, moving from west to east. Well before it reached the horizon, it broke up into smaller pieces and was lost from sight." Evidence that any part of the meteorite reached the ground has not yet been found.