On Monday, May 8, the media reported that a meteorite measuring 10 x 15 cm fell on a house in the town of Hopewell, New Jersey, USA. The metal object broke through the roof of the house and ricocheted into the bedroom. Fortunately, there was no one in the bedroom during the incident, so no one was injured.
Police are still working to determine the exact nature of the object, although officials suspect that it is connected to the current meteor shower called Eta Aquariids (η-Aquariids), the Hopewell Police Department in New Jersey says in a statement.
“I did touch the thing because it thought it was a random rock, I don’t know, and it was warm,” said local resident Suzy Kop, whose house was hit by a space rock. She said in an interview with CBS News that a meteorite broke through the roof over her father’s bedroom.
Aquarids are to blame
The Eta Aquariid meteor shower is an annual phenomenon during which the fragments of Halley’s famous comet rain into the Earth’s atmosphere. The celestial event peaked last Saturday, although it would last until May 27. The number of meteors that can be seen per hour varies for observers from the Northern and Southern hemispheres, from 10 to 85, respectively.
The outer part of meteorites can reach searing temperatures due to the incredible friction and pressure associated with plunging into the thick layers of the earth’s atmosphere at high speed, although they usually cool down quickly when they reach the surface of the Earth.
Extremely rare, but very accurate
Space rocks are falling constantly, evenly distributed over the Earth. But falls on residential buildings or settlements are extremely rare, since most of our planet is covered by oceans or undeveloped territories. However, the fall of a meteorite is not unheard of.
Just recently, a bolide exploded over Kyiv, the explosion of which was heard not only in the city, but also in the surrounding towns and villages. Of course, such a loud explosion pretty scared the people of Kyiv, because it looked like another shelling by the Russians. Scientists estimate the initial mass of the meteoroid at 200-300 kg.
In November 2022, an object believed to be a meteorite from the Taurid meteor shower hit a house in Northern California. Soon after, a fire broke out. Nevada County resident Dustin Procita was at home with two dogs during the incident, one of whom died in the fire.
We also reported how houses shuddered and windows cracked from the explosion of a meteorite over the USA.
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