Earthquake-Causing Meteor Shocks Michigan Residents


Michigan residents saw a bright light burning in the night sky followed a loud sonic boom on Tuesday (January 16) night. As the large chunk of space rock hurtled toward the ground, residents captured the rare site and uploaded videos to social media. WWJ reports that the meteor likely landed somewhere in Macomb County, causing a 2.0 earthquake that was centered about 40 miles northeast of Detroit. 

As the meteor hit the atmosphere and started to burn up, it created a massive flash of light that briefly lit up the night sky. One Michigan said it was so bright that "it almost felt like daytime there for just a brief second." 

A home surveillance video uploaded to Twitter shows meteor lighting up the night sky as it streaked toward the surface. In just five seconds, the sky goes from dark gray to bright white and back to dark gray as the meteor broke up in the atmosphere. 


Along with the blinding flash of the light, the meteor also created a massive sonic boom that registered as a 2.0 earthquake. According to the Detroit Free Press, local residents said the loud boom was strong enough to shake their homes, but there are no reports of damage.

The American Meteor Society, which tracks meteor sightings, collected 355 reports from people across six states and Canada. They said the meteor was "fairly big" and slow-moving, traveling at an estimated speed of 28,000 miles per hour. Because it broke apart deep in the atmosphere, they expect to find "meteorites on the ground near this region."


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