Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Mystery illness strikes after meteorite hits village

This just sounds like something out of a science fiction story. Meteorite hits village in Peru. Villagers then fell sick. From Yahoo News:
Residents complained of headaches and vomiting brought on by a "strange odor," local health department official Jorge Lopez told Peruvian radio RPP.

Seven policemen who went to check on the reports also became ill and had to be given oxygen before being hospitalized, Lopez said.

Rescue teams and experts were dispatched to the scene, where the meteorite left a 100-foot-wide (30-meter-wide) and 20-foot-deep (six-meter-deep) crater, said local official Marco Limache.

"Boiling water started coming out of the crater and particles of rock and cinders were found nearby. Residents are very concerned," he said.

The intelligent folks at SpaceWeather.com thinks that this story is BS:
This report is probably erroneous. To gouge such a crater, the meteorite on impact would have liberated energy equal to about 1 kiloton of TNT (akin to a tactical nuclear weapon) leaving a clear signal in worldwide seismic and infrasound records. So far, no such signals have surfaced.

I think it is more likely that the meteorite hit the ground, severed some chemical or sewage pipes and that led to the villagers falling sick.

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