Christmas fireball still unidentified; agencies release conflicting information
There are conflicting information about the true nature of the fireball streaking across the sky over Guam and the Mariana Islands Friday night.
The Offices of Guam Homeland Security and Civil Defense (GHS/OCD) said ir has received multiple reports and inquiries of recordings of spectacle.
“From the event, we found the gaps in communication between federal authorities and their counterparts,” Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero said. “I have instructed the homeland security advisor to help close those gaps in the future. The safety of the community is our priority here and part of that is making sure all are informed so when incidents do happen, they can prepare and react accordingly.”
Working with partners from the U.S. National Weather Service, Weather Forecast Office Guam, GHS/OCD issued the first notice to the public that it was considered a possible meteorite, but could not definitively state what it was.
Separately, Chinese media outlets reported that a heavy-lift Long March 5 rocket carrying a test satellite payload blasted off from the Weycheng launch site on the Southern Island of Hainan.
This corresponded with a notice from the Federal Aviation Administration notice to airmen of the mission.
GHS/OCD then issued a second statement based on the new, updated information received. GHS/OCD worked to provide timely information to the public with the information at hand.
“This incident was not a threat to the Marianas. Following the Chinese launch event, I have met with Joint Region Marianas and am working closely with the FAA on a way forward for incidents like these,” stated Tim Aguon, homeland security advisor. “I am grateful for the working relationships we have now with JRM. Our office, along with our local, military and federal partners, will continue to monitor the events surrounding our region.”