This Man Says A Basketball-Sized Meteor Exploded In His House – But Scientists Are Skeptical

A man from Nevada County, California, has claimed that his house was struck by a “flaming basketball” meteor. The incident made headline news in the area and gained him fame. 

It was true! The house was completely destroyed. The claim seemed real because a number of people in the area recorded the meteor’s descent, from the heavens. The homeowner, Dustin Procita, was very traumatized and shocked by what had happened. 

The local eyewitnesses to the meteor uploaded what they captured on the internet. They showed images and videos of a bright yellow light careening across the sky into the area. Neighbors in the area of Procita’s home told firefighters that they heard an incredibly loud crash, like thunder, and in no time, the house was set on fire.

In an interview with local reporters, Procita said, “They said it’s a 1 in 4 trillion chance” hours after the 800-square-foot home was reduced to smoldering debris.

However, the scientists who are familiar with meteors state that they have doubts about the meteor causing the explosion of the house. 

Peter Jenniskens, a meteor astronomer with the SETI Institute in Mountain View, California, the home of tech giants like Google’s parent Alphabet, told NPR that by the time the meteor reaches the earth, there is not much left to it. He mentioned that it was most likely a rogue piece of rock from the Southern Taurid meteor shower that is famous for lighting up the largest portions of the night sky with its fireballs during October.

He used Doppler weather radar to trace the trajectory of the meteors that enter the Earth between 20 to 33 kilometers per second. 

He further says, “in this case, it probably did not.” he added that he was confident in the data he had collected from the Doppler radar sweeping the area.

The weather radar oftentimes catches rock hitting the ground and mistakes it for hail. “In this case, that was not seen. So we don’t think that enough material survived for the radar to get a signal.”

According to his calculations, the meteor seen by the eyewitnesses would have landed 37 kilometers, about 23 miles, away from Procita’s home. It was most likely an illusion created by the meteor. 

Also, he said that falling meteors might appear like fireballs but are never the cause of setting things on fire on Earth as they are not hot enough to make it happen.

When meteorites finally hit the ground he said, “they land cold.”

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