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Video: Meteorite Explodes Over Russia, Injuring Nearly 1,000

Meteorite showers pass over a remote region of Russia, while massive explosion is caught on video by numerous shocked onlookers.


What was initially reported as a meteorite shower passed over a remote region of Russia in the Ural Mountains, causing a massive explosion that shattered windows and left hundreds of people with injuries in several cities.

It is now disputed, as the Guardian points out, whether a single meteor or a shower caused the impact. It's also in dispute whether the meteorite impact may somehow be connected to the asteroid whizzing by Earth today, with scientific sources cited in various reports disagreeing.

"There was panic. People had no idea what was happening. Everyone was going around to people's houses to check if they were OK," Sergey Hametov, a local resident of local resident Chelyabinsk, told the Associated Press.

A local governor told Russia Today that 950 people were injured by the blast. The outlet had earlier noted that 112 people were hospitalized, while 725 residents of Chelaybinsk had sought medical attention. According to the Emergency Ministry, RT reported, 159 of the injured are children.

Nearly 300 apartment buildings were damaged by the impact, RT added.

Russian military representatives found three craters from the above-ground meteorite explosion on Feb. 15, according to RT, including one crater measuring 6 meters (19 feet) across. Radiation levels at the site were normal.

Numerous residents of the town of Chelyabinsk managed to document the fiery descent of one meteorite on video, some captured by Russia's popular car dashboard cameras.

Here are various shots of the meteorite's descent over Chelaybinsk, posted by Russia Today — some portraying an eerie change in light as the flaming rock passes over residential areas.

Is the Russian meteorite incident related to the impending Feb 15th "fly-over" by the asteroid 2012 DA14?

Doubtful, scientists from the European Space Agency said to CBS News, an opinion backed up by Professor Alan Fitzsimmons, of the Astrophysics Research Centre at Queen's University Belfast, who described it to the BBC as "literally a cosmic coincidence, although a spectacular one."


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