WATCH: Did you see it? A suspected meteor lit up the sky across southern B.C. Isabelle Raghem reports.
If you were outside or looking out your window Thursday night, a flashing light may have caught your eye.
Many across southern B.C. spotted a meteor lighting up the night sky around 9:40 p.m.
Michael Tymchuk says he saw the fireball as he was driving on the Trans-Canada from Langford, towards Victoria.
“It was a variety of colours,” explains the CBC Victoria producer, “I thought it must be a shooting star, but it was unlike anything I had ever seen.”
So what was it? Experts suspect it was a meteor speeding through the sky.
“The outer surface [of meteors] gets extremely hot, that sets up mechanical stresses inside, as it passes through the atmosphere little pieces melt,” explains UVic Physics and Astronomy Professor Jeremy Tatum.
While Thursday night’s meteor was likely not much bigger than a foot or so, bigger ones are on the way.
“That one was too small to cause any danger but there will be larger one, it’s inevitable, there will be one that causes wide spread global damage,” says Dr. Tatum.
But when? Dr. Tatum says it’s unknown.
“The probability that this is going to happen in a year or so is almost negligible, in 10-million years? Yes, it will happen.”