|Occurred : 7/27/2012 22:45 (Entered as : 07/27/2012 22:45)
Reported: 8/10/2012 3:47:22 PM 15:47
Location: Wamego, KS
|Two Blue Lights Escorted by a Helicopter in Night Sky
My family and I were visiting my sister and her family at their rural home several miles northeast of Wamego, Kansas. At about 10:45 pm I opened the curtains of the living room in order to use the remote lock on our automobile’s ignition key to lock the vehicle as it sat in the driveway of the home. Momentarily after closing the curtains my 9 year old daughter asked me “Dad, what were those blue lights?” Thinking that she had simply seen one or more of the yard lights near the storage barn(s) on the property I told her such. She then replied “No, that’s not what I’m talking about.” At this point we went back to the window, pulled back the curtains and, sure enough, there were two blue lights that appeared to be located above the barn / equipment shed located northeast of the home. These lights were distinctly not the above-mentioned yard lights and, I would estimate, were located approximately one-quarter to one-third of a mile from the home and probably around 800 – 1000 feet in the air. The location of the barn / equipment shed would be approximately 200 feet northeast of the home. The lights appeared to be moving in a southerly direction that would cause them to pass to the east of the home. The color of the lights is best described simply as blue … no off colors such as sky blue, baby blue, etc. … just blue.
Wanting to get a better look at the lights, my daughter and I immediately stepped out onto the porch of the home and watched two blue lights transit from north to south at a distance of about one quarter of a mile to the east of the home. It was at this point that we noticed what was likely a helicopter accompanying / following the two blue lights. The helicopter was distinct from the two blue lights that it was trailing in that we could observe at least two navigation lights (red and green), a flashing / strobe light (white) that would illuminate a portion of the aircraft / helicopter body, and we could easily recognize the characteristic engine and rotor noise of a helicopter. In contrast to this, the two blue lights did not flicker or flash, were not accompanied by any other lights, did not change colors, did not illuminate any visible structure around them and did issue any noise … or at least any noise that was perceptible above the noise of the helicopter.
As the group passed to the east of the home, it appeared that we could get a better estimate of the relative positions of the helicopter and the two blue lights as well as their speed(s). Again, the group was still in the range of one-quarter to one-third of a mile in distance and probably 800 – 1000 feet above the ground. Viewing the formation from an approximate right angle to the direction of flight, we observed the helicopter trailing or following the two blue lights. All three were at the same altitude. One of the blue lights led the formation, the second blue light trailed the first by approximately 500 - 750 feet, and the helicopter trailed the second blue light by another 500 - 750 feet. All three were moving to the south at the same speed, which I would estimate as the normal speed of a helicopter … perhaps 120 to 150 miles per hour.
Once the helicopter and two blue lights transited behind the side of the house so that we could not see them, we went back into / through the home to the deck on the south side of the structure. We then observed the helicopter and two lights continue their flight to the south with the same speed, height, direction, and formation described above until they passed from view behind the trees located a short distance (several hundred feet) to the south of the house. The helicopter and lights were probably three-quarters of a mile distant when we last observed them.
As we were observing the formation from this vantage point, I consciously made an effort to try to discern or distinguish any noise emanating from the two lights as distinct from the noise of the helicopter. The reason I tried to do this is that I realized that, given the radial separation of the helicopter and the two lights from this observation point, I should have been able to distinguish any noise from the lights as opposed to noise from the helicopter. I could not do so and the only noise that I heard appeared to be coming from the helicopter alone. Again, I would note that it simply may have been that any noise that might have been emitted from the two blue lights could not have been heard over the noise of the helicopter … but it was at this point that I should have had the best opportunity to hear any noise from the two blue lights.
The entire observation occurred over a period of approximately 45 seconds to one minute.
In terms of atmospheric conditions, it was overcast at the time of observation with a relatively low ceiling that I would estimate at perhaps 4000 – 5000 feet.
Although it is difficult to say for sure given that we observed this at night, I don’t believe that the two blue lights were part of the structure of the helicopter nor were they part of a single structure. My impression is that each blue light was independent of each other and the helicopter. Also, I wouldn’t characterize the flight formation as a helicopter chasing the two lights but rather it appeared as if the helicopter was escorting the two blue lights. I also recognize the difficulty of accurately gauging distances / heights / speeds in a night sky but I do feel that the estimates that I cite above are fairly accurate given the close proximity of the observation.
My guess is that there is a conventional explanation for what we observed. Nonetheless, I find the number of unusual characteristics of our observation sufficient enough to make an effort to submit a detailed report to this database.
I have no doubt that I observed a helicopter. But I am a bit puzzled as to the nature of the two blue lights that we observed in front of the helicopter.