Mystery sound may have been a meteor: expert
Quebecers from St. Lazare to Valleyfield to Laval were abuzz on social media Tuesday evening, wondering aloud what the big bang was that rattled their windows and lit up the sky.
It turns out the noise was heard as far south as Plattsburgh, NY, and as far west as Winthrop, NY, which is near Cornwall, Ont.
According to astronomy expert Andrew Fazekas, all signs point to the loud noise and light being caused by a meteor entering the Earth’s atmosphere.
"There could very well be meteorite fragments that are lying on the ground somewhere in the Quebec-Ontario region," said Fazekas.
"We don't have confirmation that it was a meteorite, but the fact there was a sonic boom indicates it was large. Larger than average."
Police officers were sent to Vaudreuil to investigate the sound, but never came up with a location of where the supposed explosion took place, and never could say what caused the noise.
Twitter and Facebook users reported hearing a loud bang and seeing a bright blue light illuminate the sky around 8 p.m.
Lise Berubé said she heard a boom from her home in Pincourt.
“Sounded like something hit my house, thought my husband was outside doing something,” she wrote on CTV Montreal’s Facebook page.
Jennifer Kinsella in Chateauguay said she heard a noise that “sounded like big trucks colliding.”
Others took the opportunity to crack a few jokes, with Caroline Hurtubise saying on Twitter that the notice was “probably the Champlain Bridge... I knew it wouldn't last!”
Fazekas explained a meteor travels at up to 60,000 kilometres per hour and that could be the size of the small car. Because it is travelling faster than the speed of sound, upon entering the lower part of our atmosphere it may break up or cause a sonic boom, which would explain the noise many people heard Tuesday night.
“It will take maybe a day or a few days for scientists to gather all the necessary observations, visual reports, photographs and possible videos and try to triangulate the trajectory may have taken, if it is in fact a meteor,” Fazekas said.
He said meteors of that size usually crash into Earth once every three years, and since the planet is increasingly populated, the confusion Quebecers experience Tuesday night will become more common.
If you have any photos or video from the explosion, upload it to our MyNews page.