Watch | ‘Crazy fireworks’: Mysterious lights in night sky leave Californians shocked, amazed

Mysterious streaks of light were seen across the night sky in the United States’ Sacramento area late Friday, shocking those who were in the midst of celebrating St. Patrick’s Day who went on to post videos of the incident on social media, said a report by the Associated Press. 

The 40-second video was captured by Jaime Hernandez who was at the King Cong Brewing Company in Sacramento, California celebrating St. Patrick’s Day and was among a group of people who witnessed the surprising sight and quickly started filming. In an email to AP, Hernandez said, “Mainly, we were in shock, but amazed that we got to witness it. None of us had ever seen anything like it.” 

Subsequently, the owner of the King Cong Brewing Company posted the video shot by Hernandez on their Instagram page calling it “crazy fireworks” which flew over the brewery. 

But what was it? Seems like an astronomer at the Harvard-Smithsonian Centre for Astrophysics had the answer which was space debris. In an interview with AP, the astronomer said that he was 99.99 per cent sure that the streaks of light were from burning space debris. A Japanese Inter-Orbit Communication System that relayed information from the International Space Station to a satellite and back to Earth became obsolete in 2017 and was retired. 

The US Space Force also confirmed the re-entry of the equipment weighing 310 kilograms was jettisoned from the space station in 2020 as it was occupying space and would burn up completely upon re-entry. The space force also confirmed that the timing is consistent with what people saw in the sky, McDowell told AP. The flaming bits of wreckage created a “spectacular light show in the sky”, said the astronomer. 

(With inputs from agencies)


You can now write for and be a part of the community. Share your stories and opinions with us here.