Hundreds report seeing bright fireball at sunrise

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Hundreds of people in several states, including Iowa and Illinois, reported a bright fireball in the sky early Thursday morning, September 26, 2013.

The American Meteor Society received more than 200 reports of the fireball seen over California, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Tennessee and Wisconsin at around 6 a.m. Central time.  Many of the reports appeared to be centered in an area near and south of Lake Michigan.

Witnesses reported seeing a clearly-visible fireball that appeared to be falling at a high rate of speed toward the horizon.  Some said it looked like it was possibly a slow-moving “shooting star,” and several reported initially fearing the falling light might have been an aircraft in distress.

Several online witness reports indicated the light from the reported meteor had distinct color – ranging from green to yellow to blue to purple – and appeared to move from west to southeast.  Most reported it was only visible for a few seconds.

An online witness report from Walcott, Iowa indicated a large and very bright white ball with lots of fragmentation that appeared to be approaching the sun.  “Best one I have ever seen!” the report said.

Several YouTube posts show video of a similar incident reported by Royal Canadian Mounted Police who captured dashcam video from a patrol car of a fireball lighting up the sky in Alberta on Saturday evening, September 21.