Suspected Meteor fireball photographed Gloucester UK 9 March 2014 [Sunset Contrail]

Trigger Hippie

Senior Member.
Hucclecote mum Sarah-Jane Stanley was out walking in Churchdown on Sunday evening when she caught sight of a mysterious object plummeting towards earth.

She said: "I didn't think anything of it and took the photo as a general sunset picture. Then my 11-year-old daughter and I realised it was moving.

"I took around 15 clear photos in all, with some exactly a minute apart, and you can see how fast it is travelling by the distance it falls on each picture.

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I'm not sure I understand her narrative. How fast did this object "plummet" towards the ground? At first they didn't realize it was even moving. She took 15 pics, some at one minute intervals.

I'm leaning towards this being a contrail.
 

Balance

Senior Member.
http://www.gloucestercitizen.co.uk/...unidentified/story-20798837-detail/story.html

If you click through the pictures, there's another snaphot taken by someone else (Andrew Hill) presumably from a different angle.

From the comments section, another witness

ds9074 | March 13 2014, 12:43AM
I saw the same thing from Shab Hill near the Air Balloon on Sunday night and took some photos, which I have sent to the email address. Sorry to be cynical but it looked like the contrail of a plane to me at the time and still does
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scombrid

Senior Member.
Hucclecote mum Sarah-Jane Stanley was out walking in Churchdown on Sunday evening when she caught sight of a mysterious object plummeting towards earth.

She said: "I didn't think anything of it and took the photo as a general sunset picture. Then my 11-year-old daughter and I realised it was moving.

"I took around 15 clear photos in all, with some exactly a minute apart, and you can see how fast it is travelling by the distance it falls on each picture.

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That's a mightly slow plummet.

Let's see.
Photos show extensive cirrus clouds.
"Object" visible for at least 15 minutes.

And this.

On one of the pictures, there appear to be two tails coming from whatever it is
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Contrail.
 

scombrid

Senior Member.
“I sent the larger photos to the Met Office as I wondered if it was something weather related. They came back to me and said their forecasters say it is not a weather phenomenon and looks like something entering the Earth’s atmosphere.
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Really? The Met Office didn't recognize a contrail? They told her it was "something" entering the atmosphere?

Oh well, I guess that's not much different than the "official" response to the initial reports of a rocket launch in this story:


http://www.cnn.com/2010/US/11/09/california.contrails/

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/11/09/mystery-missle-launch-off-california/
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
I'm going to call this "contrail", based on:
  1. Looks exactly like a contrail at sunset
  2. Moves like a plane (15 minutes to slowly "fall" towards the horizon)
  3. Casts a shadow behind itself while heading towards the sun, so it's horizontal
It's yet another example of a sunlit contrail causing confusion, just a bit longer than usual.

http://contrailscience.com/short-sunlit-contrails-look-like-ufos/

It's basically this, but with a thicker trail (I took this photo)
 
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Hama Neggs

Senior Member.
“I sent the larger photos to the Met Office as I wondered if it was something weather related. They came back to me and said their forecasters say it is not a weather phenomenon and looks like something entering the Earth’s atmosphere.
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Really? The Met Office didn't recognize a contrail? They told her it was "something" entering the atmosphere?

Oh well, I guess that's not much different than the "official" response to the initial reports of a rocket launch in this story:


http://www.cnn.com/2010/US/11/09/california.contrails/

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/11/09/mystery-missle-launch-off-california/

If they didn't understand that the object was seen to be moving very slowly, that would throw them off.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Any "meteor" seen at sunset should immediately be treated as a likely contrail. Meteors happen 24 hours a day, yet somehow 99% of these reports happen at sunset.

San Mateo Times, Jan 12th, 1950:


Here's one on Wikipedia:
 
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TEEJ

Senior Member.
I contacted the very nice lady via her Flickr Account and sent her the thread link. Thank you Sarah for providing the time and location. Possibly a likely candidate can be found on Flight Radar 24? It was at 5.51 to 5.59 over Gloucester (1751 to 1759 GMT).
 

TEEJ

Senior Member.

BAW187 does appear to tie up!

http://www.flightradar24.com/2014-03-09/17:46/12x/BAW91W/2db84e7

Sarah very kindly provided more details

It was initially vertical then headed off towards the sun. Strange shape at the head of it and it was definitely spiralling.
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Sarah,
The vertical observation will be down purely to perspective. The 'vertical contrail' is another commonly mistaken observation. People have reported them as missiles!

Also take into consideration that the aviation in the region at that time would also be reporting a fireball in the sky.

'Missile' example California, 2010

http://contrailscience.com/los-angeles-missile-contrail-explained-in-pictures/
 
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