|Occurred : 3/19/2012 22:00 (Entered as : 03/19/2012 22:00)
Reported: 3/19/2012 9:57:01 PM 21:57
Location: Buffalo, NY
|Orange "fireball" witnessed in the sky west-by-northwest of Buffalo.
We observed an orangeish "fireball" shape in the sky, west by northwest of north Buffalo. (We were on Main Street, slightly south of Northrup St., for what that's worth.) It appeared to be a single rapidly and irregularly flickering light source. There was conventional air traffic visible in the same general region of the sky at that time, and the difference between this light source and the planes was pretty obvious: those had regular blinking and distinct lights, even at a great distance, while this thing did not.
It did not keep a perfectly straight course as near as I could tell--there appeared to be some "wobbling," although not all of us agreed on that. (At least one of us thought it was an illusion caused by the light flickering.) My first thought was that it was a large flying paper lantern, but it was much too bright, much too high up, and after a minute it was clear that it was ascending too quickly for that.
It was very clearly visible in the middle of a heavily light-polluted metropolitan area, so it wasn't a faint light.
It appeared to be ascending very rapidly, much faster than I have ever personally seen a conventional aircraft rise. Closest thing I could compare it to from my own experience is a space shuttle launch I saw about ten years ago, but this left no exhaust trail. After about two minutes, it began to dim and disappeared completely over a ten second period.