Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2013/08/02/mystery_object_falls_from_sky_area_sealed_off_by_military_weather_balloon_say_officials/

Mystery object falls from sky, area sealed off by military: 'Weather balloon', say officials

Even if it was, nobody's going to believe THAT

By Lewis Page

Posted in Science, 2nd August 2013 04:59 GMT

Simply nobody will be giving any credence to officials in America who have stated that a mystery object which fell from the sky this week - after which the surrounding area was evacuated and sealed off for some time by police and military personnel - was just a "weather balloon".

Reportedly, large numbers of government operatives from various agencies converged urgently on a residential neighbourhood in Norfolk, Virginia, on Tuesday night after an unidentified object fell from the sky there. News reports describe the object as "something odd", with some eyewitness accounts saying it resembled a balloon and others suggesting that the crashlanded artifact had a structure similar to "styrofoam". According to local TV news:

One person told authorities it was making a strange noise.

People living and working in the immediate area were rapidly evacuated and the district was sealed off by a combination of police and military personnel. The presence of operatives from shadowy federal agencies in overall charge of the incident was - of course - not mentioned by spokesmen briefing the media.

However, it was revealed that initial contact with the landed object was handled using a robot. Following this there was consultation with experts from NASA.

Not long thereafter the mystery object from the sky was apparently loaded onto an unidentified government vehicle and removed from the scene. Subsequently local residents were permitted to return to their homes and the military and police contingents dispersed.

An official spokesman, Battalion Chief Julian Williamson, then briefed reporters, saying that "investigators made contact with the package and determined it to be ... a weather balloon".

He also urged anyone finding or seeing any other such objects or happenings:

"Do not investigate on your own. Just call the authorities."

The truth is out there here and here. ®