Mysterious Bang and Flash in the Sky Over Queensland May Have Been a Meteorite

September 27, 2016 | Erica Tennenhouse

Photo credit: www.pixabay.com

"We are very worried about the potential of a much larger object hitting the Earth.”

At about 8:30 pm on Monday, numerous residents of central Queensland, Australia reported a bright flash across the sky, a loud bang, and a tremor.

The event may have been a meteorite impact near the coast, according to some experts. David Parkinson, a cosmologist at the University of Queensland, tells The Observer, “The loud boom and bright light suggest an explosion of some kind, so meteor impact sounds like the best explanation, as far as we know at the moment.”

RELATED: Scientists Investigate Possible First Death by Meteorite in Almost 200 Years

Yet other experts, like astronomer Owen Bennedick from Wappa Falls Observatory, do not believe there was any impact. He tells The Brisbane Times that an asteroid exploding in an “air burst,” without making contact with the Earth, likely caused the flash in the sky.

Michael Drinkwater, a professor at the University of Queensland, points out that half a million small meteorites potentially hit the Earth each year, most of which go unnoticed.

"We are very worried about the potential of a much larger object hitting the Earth, an asteroid or something and there are a number of programs running to try to monitor this," says Drinkwater.

Though the change of such an object impacting Earth is small, and even smaller than it would land in a populated area, the occurrence would be potentially “very serious,” he adds.

Check out footage of the event, released by the Department of Transport:


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