Fireball illuminates sky over Pakistan, causing panic

Fireball illuminates sky over Pakistan, causing panic

A bright meteor fireball illuminated the sky over northern Pakistan around 16:00 UTC (21:00 PKT) on Wednesday, March 15, 2017, causing panic among residents. The object was traveling very low and was followed by several, powerful blasts some 5 seconds later.

"I saw a light flash through the sky and then there were multiple blasts," Ghizer district resident Javed Iqbal told AFP today. "I felt as if something had hit the roof of my house. I rushed outside with my family members and saw everyone getting out of their homes. The blasts had shaken the whole valley," he said.

Sibtain Ahmed, a senior administration official in Gilgit, said the object was seen in Gilgit, Ghizer and Diamer districts, and was followed by the sound of loud explosions.

"According to our investigation, the flying object was a meteor flying low," he told AFP. "The apparent blasts were the sonic boom created as the meteor ripped through the sky faster than the speed of sound," he said.

"It did not hit the ground," he added, claiming it had crossed Pakistan's territory headed towards Afghanistan's Wakhan Corridor, which borders the Gilgit-Baltistan region to the north.

Social media was flooded with reports of the incident, with some users posting unverified images of the event.

Featured image: Perseid meteor by theilr - August 13, 2015. (CC - Flickr)

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