Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Wednesday Weird: Washington D.C. UFO

First Wednesday Weird of the year!

I try to space out weirds, so like if I did an animal, or space, or ghost one recently, I try to avoid them for a bit. So today, we're back to UFO sightings.

Between July 13th and the 29th of a series of UFO sightings were reported over Washington D.C. They were seen by eyewitness on the ground.

The first substantiated report, though, came in on July 19th, when an air traffic controller of Washington National Airport noticed 7 unidentifiable blips on his radar. They had erratic movement (not like normal aircraft) and weren't following flight paths.

And it wasn't just their radar either. At Andrew's Air Force Base, air traffic controllers were also tracking the same objects on their radar. According to the military's report on the incident, both towers were tracking an object that was hovering over a radio beacon.

Then it vanished on both radars at the exact same time.

One week later, on July 26th, the exact same thing happened. Same radars, same blips, same day of the week. So the air force sent fighter jets.

One jet saw nothing. But the other reported four orbs of light zipping around. The pilot even called to ask if he should shoot them. Then the lights streaked out of sight.

All of this was enough to attract the attention of President Harry Truman. At this point, Project Bluebook was going strong (project Bluebook was the government's response to UFO sightings, mostly to debunk them, but also to make sure they weren't, like, Russian spy machines).

Bluebook was headed by an Air Force captain and their solution to these sightings were the radars giving off false signals due to temperature inversion (where layers of moist air covers layers of dry air and can reflect radar signals). This, of course, didn't account for the eyewitness sightings, or the fact that temperature inversions are common and don't show up on radar.

So the government's official position ended up being a temperature inversion (which, remember, doesn't show up on radars) AND a meteor storm at the same time to confuse the eye witnesses.




Maria Zannini said...

Meteors don't hover.

LOL. At least they didn't say it was a weather balloon.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

And at least they didn't claim swamp gas!

Slamdunk said...

Interesting Sarah.

One can always be suspicious when a poor Captain is placed at the head of such a high-profile inquiry. Smells like a fall-guy to me.

Anne Gallagher said...

When I lived at the beach we used to see stuff hovering over the ocean all the time. Never knew if they were UFO's or not, but it was something to see, that's for sure.

Rena said...

Oh, the government going with temperature inversions totally reminds me of the Albuquerque mass hallucination. There was a report of a naked woman walking on the balcony of a store that used to be a brothel (you know, showing the wares). People in the plaza started calling up to the woman, and after she got enough attention, she went back inside, right through the wall. Hundreds of people saw this, and despite the complete debunking of the mass hallucination theory (mass hallucinations don't happen, though people can have separate hallucinations at the same time), that is the official report. Silly government

Jamie Gibbs said...

It was probably the Russians ;)


Hannah Kincade said...

The Go'uld are coming!!! Call Daniel Jackson! Tell him to check at my place first...

Teebore said...

What year was this? Truman was pres, so sometime between'45 and'52, obviously. Just curious.

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