Fireball spotted over the area Sunday night

Check out this local video of a fireball spotted over Staunton
Published: Mar. 22, 2021 at 8:39 PM EDT|Updated: Mar. 22, 2021 at 8:44 PM EDT
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - Late Sunday night, a home security camera captured this incredible view. That’s a fireball flying very brightly across the sky shortly after midnight.

Usually when there’s a bright fireball it can be seen for hundreds of miles, and often across several states. According to the American Meteor Society (yes, that’s a real thing!) there were more than 200 reports with most of those concentrated in Pennsylvania. Other reports came in from as far away as Ohio, Connecticut, Toronto and North Carolina.

What’s even more interesting is that there were four fireball reports this weekend

There have been numerous videos shared on social media. To be honest, this video (the one above) is the first one someone has sent me from our local area.

Fireball Specs

  • The American Meteor society reports the fireball was moving northwest at 51,000 miles per hour.
  • The fireball traveled 38 miles through the atmosphere before fragmenting above the Pennsylvania town of Newburg.
  • The cause was by an asteroidal fragment weighing 7 pounds and about 5 inches in diameter.

This video below is from Arlington, VA.

So what is a fireball?

A fireball is a meteor brighter than the planet Venus. So it’s just another name for a really big meteor. How often do these happen?

The American Meteorological Society says that several thousand fireballs happen every day! However, with the majority of our planet as water, many of these fireballs aren’t seen. It’s also pretty rare for one to be seen in the daylight, of course the brighter it is the better the chance.

Here’s a daytime fireball from February of 2020.

The AMS says the brighter the fireball, the more rare it is.

Have you ever spotted one? If you do, you can report it. Remember as many details as you can about the direction and how bright it was. Here’s the link to report one:

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