Driving, less than a block from home, I saw something I had never seen before.
An astronomically bright flash in the sky, followed by a low rumble.
At first I thought there was a thunderstorm in the gulf but I knew I hadn't seen any rain in the forecast. It was around 11:17 PM.
I went to MOSI astronomer Dennis Farr for answers.
"What you saw was a meteorite. And possibly it exploded just before it hit the ground," Farr said. "There were at least 92 sightings all the way from south Miami to southern Alabama."
Farr says the meteor likely was the size of a softball as it entered the atmosphere at over 17,000 miles per hour. Sightings can be once in a lifetime events, but they are being reported more often as video cameras become more common.
"It's like they say, miracles are only good for the people that see them. Meteorites are kind of the same way," Farr said.
Dash cams from several police agencies popped up online showing the flash of light; videos that, if submitted to the American Meteor Society website, can help astronomers determine the angle and find out exactly where it came down and where it hit, if it actually made it to the earth.
"And you're pretty sure it wasn't a UFO," I asked Farr.
"Yes," Farr said.
You can see a 352-pound meteorite in the lobby of MOSI, discovered in Argentina. Natives used the iron from the meteorites there to make weapons.
(© 2017 WTSP)