ST. ALBANS, W.Va. — Anthony Harmon was walking to catch a KRT bus just after 10 p.m. Thursday night to head to work at WCHS Radio in Charleston. While on the bridge over the Coal River, he witnessed the phenomena which had everybody in southern West Virginia talking and tweeting.

“I was just going to my usual spot, right across the St. Albans Bridge,” said Harmon. “I heard this big boom and I look up and I saw this big ball going across with flames coming from it.”

Harmon said he felt a slight shake in the ground after the loud boom, which he initially thought was a transformer exploding.

“It didn’t scare me, I just thought it was electrical or maybe even somebody putting off fireworks,” he said. “I looked up and flames were coming across and I thought, ‘Oh, it was a meteor.’  It was just this round ball with flames coming out of it.”

Harmon said the meteor was visible in the sky for a little over a minute and then disappeared.

Officials with the National Meteor Society are investigating the reports. The 911 centers in Kanawha, Boone, Lincoln, Logan, and Raleigh counties were all immediately swamped with calls from witnesses who either heard, felt, or saw it happened.

It’s believed the meteor was about the size of a softball when it struck the ground somewhere in Tennessee.  They theorize the sound everybody heard was a sonic boom as it entered the earth’s atmosphere and began to burn.

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Comments

  • maxeer

    Raise your hand if your think you'll be alive in 2100?....thats what I thought!

  • wow

    What a brave soul that thinks they can win an argument with The Bookman. By the way Charleston Cheese is it not the alter of Al Gore and George Soros that you would pray at ?

  • Charleston Cheese

    Bookman,
    i have no idea what you are talking about and therefore will I not say you're obfuscating. What I will do is go along with the 97% of the scientific community who say we can mitigate climate change. Unlike the industry-funded "experts" these scientists have no motivation to lie about this. As for myself, I have plenty of motivation to take steps toward reversing climate change - children and eventually grandchildren as well knowing as i wasn't part of the generation that said "screw future generations, I pray at the altar of the Koch brothers."

    • Jim

      Cheese,

      As a working scientist, I can tell you that about half of scientists are not minimally competent in their own field. Just like any other line of work, companies and universities need warm bodies to fill up desks.

      Furthermore, as you surely know, environmental journals and funding agencies, the folks who decide whether you keep working in academics or not, have a demonstrated politically driven bias.

      Nonetheless, I am willing to stipulate that 97% of "the scientific community" professes to believe in global warming (or whatever term they have pivoted to this week), right or wrong, but truth and reality and science are not decided by taking a vote.

      • Charleston Cheese

        Working Scientist:
        You know what a peer-review journal is, right? These journals published 10,885 scientific studies on climate change in 2013 and all but 2 concluded climate change is real and anthropogenic (man-made). That is 10,883 to 2. So , i apologize for using the wrong number. It's not 97%, It's 99.9%.

    • The bookman

      The information I present regarding warming of the planet are facts that are unchallenged and provided in the IPCC report from the UN. The forward projection is that by 2100, global temperatures will have risen by 0.3 to 4.3 degrees Celsius, a fairly wide range in prediction. On the low end of their projection the UN stands behind a global rise in temps of less than 1/2 the rise experienced in the last 130 years over the course of the next 85? And Standard and Poors suggests that ratings reductions will be in order due to the hysteria behind climate change, and that any agreed upon reductions in CO2 will be negated by other countries like China.

      I agree science is on the same page regarding the correlation of atmospheric CO2 and global temperature rise. There is also consensus that CO2 concentrations aren't at the levels used to make the temperature projections, and as a result, the temperature rises projected haven't occurred, thus the infamous pause in temp rises. And on that scientific result, we should end an industry which provides 40% of our electrical generation in an environment without a suitable reliable alternative? You may not know what I'm talking about, but I have no idea what consideration to the facts have been given by you and others to the undeniable and irrefutable facts presented here.

      • Charleston Cheese

        That argument that "China won't change so why bother?" is very shortsighted. You betray yourself as Feaux News dittohead. First of all, the U.S. could and should lead the interventions to alleviate CO2.

        One, The very energy companies burning fossil fuels own patents on technologies to convert.

        Two, the U.S government should fund investment into research into alternative energy because we all agree that its costs money and governments of world powers with a history of leading virtually every major industrial and technological revolution in history do this type of thing. You conservatives want to be proactive with social security by "fixing" or eliminating social security which will be solvent for at least another 20 years even if we do nothing. Why not be proactive in leading the next big economic revolution (which will also be good for the air and water)?

        You do understand that alternatives to fossil fuels are inevitable, don't you? Even if there was no payoff for it, wouldn't it be the moral and self-preserving course of action anyway? It is amazing how easily conservatives abandon their high and mighty, ummm... ahem, "principles" when they cause conflict with conservative dogma. It's typical chickenhawk mentality. "If its not easy then count me out!"

        • The bookman

          Oh my goodness there is so much to refute, I shall take it one bite at a time.

          You write,
          "That argument that "China won't change so why bother?" is very shortsighted. You betray yourself as Feaux News dittohead. First of all, the U.S. could and should lead the interventions to alleviate CO2."

          What a lazy argument! Zero information used to formulate my comment was obtained from FoxNews. The majority of the information is from a few recent articles from Bloomberg News, of Mayor Bloomberg fame, not necessarily a Koch Brother. However, those stories were based on data obtained from the UN or The S&P and stand on their own as uncontested. China is certainly a major contributor to the future emissions issue, however it is the BRIC, Brazil, Russia, India, and China collectively that pose the greatest risk of the emerging economies. So, it's not just China that you are requesting receive a US paid energy subsidy, it's also those other three countries, including the country Vladimir Putin calls his homeland.

          You write,
          "One, The very energy companies burning fossil fuels own patents on technologies to convert. "

          Are you indicating that energy companies have invested in technologies that capture CO2? Just checking if that is somehow a bad thing.

          You write,
          "Two, the U.S government should fund investment into research into alternative energy because we all agree that its costs money and governments of world powers with a history of leading virtually every major industrial and technological revolution in history do this type of thing. "

          The US is spending billions developing these technologies, and subsidizing wind and solar development as well. But China is scheduled to bypass this country as the world's largest economy, meaning it is number 2 right now. Why give them the pass? Why shoulder our economy with the burden and provide BRIC with the competitive advantage, especially when the projections of temperature increases are not occurring? We do live in a global economy, so should we tie the noose around our own neck on behalf of the Chinese and Russians?

          You write,
          "You conservatives want to be proactive with social security by "fixing" or eliminating social security which will be solvent for at least another 20 years even if we do nothing. Why not be proactive in leading the next big economic revolution (which will also be good for the air and water)? "

          I believe it is unconscionable to do nothing with Social Security and other doomed to fail entitlements that people will rely on for food and shelter when we know, not theorize or surmise or can project by feeding unobserved variable data into a computer, it will collapse. To compare the two issues shows the vacuum of understanding you have for the certainty of failure in social security and the uncertainty tied to the climate debate.

          To summarize, I understand the concept of finite resources. Really, I do. An all of the above strategy includes the reliance of fossil fuel generation while developing the alternatives to fossil fuels. Look at the Sierra Club's website to see their vision of tomorrow. It of course is absent coal, but it also calls for public pressure against the extraction of Natural Gas, touted as the future fuel not a few years ago. Wind and Solar are no panacea environmentally, and are not realistic alternatives at this point. I don't, nor have I ever argued we shouldn't be trying to do it cleaner, and more efficiently, utilizing an all of the above approach. The left needs to re-evaluate its all of the above slogan if it wants to maintain some semblance of accuracy and and credibility.

  • Ralph

    A really cool event. I'm envious of those who got to see it.

    But why does it have to be about politics?

    • The bookman

      I agree it is a sad commentary that what would appear to be just an interesting extraterrestrial event could lead to a political statement on climate change, but at least the comments are based on verifiable scientific evidence and put forward as theory, albeit widely accepted theory.

      The theory that CO2 accumulation in the atmosphere could lead to global warming is also widely accepted, and has been demonstrated by the application of the scientific method and computer generated climate models. The disconnect is where the projections fail to meet actual observations, which is the current situation regarding the warming models. It is therefore not conclusive, nor is it probable, that man has any impact on the minimal temperature rise of 1.9 degrees F over the last 135 years. True science would require that new questions be asked and an unbiased approach to develop new theories would be the next step. That is not happening. As you have astutely pointed out, politics have soured the science from both sides of the argument.

      The result is that the argument then becomes a political debate, and not a scientific one. The left holds the political power and is therefore executing its agenda, killing an industry and destroying families in our state, and will if fully implemented, damage our economy, way of life, and national security in the process. So when this administration removes its political agenda from the science of climate change, I will stop using verifiable science to refute their political claims.

      • Alum

        Bookman, your second paragraph is an excellent summary of the issue and the problems with those bent on embracing the theory at any cost.

  • Max

    The event Bookman is talking about was REAL global warming...err...climate change...or whatever the the liberals talk about, but have no real proof of.

    • The bookman

      In this instance, the theory is definitive. It would have been cooling due to the enormous impact and subsequent dust cloud that encircled the earth. This event would have been apocalyptic and cataclysmic, yet a quarter of all species would have survived, and it would have taken 200,000 years for the last dinosaurs to leave the fossil record. Climates do change, all the time, very slowly, and naturally. The Earth is a great equalizer and man is a very small player in the large scheme of things.

  • Jim

    These things always seem to happen in Russia. Kinda cool having it happen here.

    • Wesley

      The Tunguska event in 1908 was unreal.

      • The bookman

        This event....6 inch meteor

        Tunguska.....minimum estimates of 200 feet in diameter....largest impact event in recorded history.

        K-T Event....ended the dinosaurs and 75% of the species on Earth.....estimates of 6 miles in diameter.

        Wish I had seen it, the 6 inch meteor, that is!

      • Curious

        Were you around to witness it Wesley?