Yesterday, the BBC reported that a large meteor plunged into a lake near Chebarkul in the Ural mountains of Russia, leaving a 20ft-wide crater on the shore. Although there are no reported fatalities, more than 1,000 people near the impact site were injured by shattering glass or building structural damage following the impact.
The meteor could be seen streaking through the morning sky, briefly outshining the sun. Most were at work or school when the ten-ton bus-sized meteor struck around 9:20 a.m. local time. Residents of cities 125 miles to the north and south also witnessed the meteor's decent through the atmosphere.
"It was quite extraordinary," Chelyabinsk resident Polina Zolotarevskaya said in an interview with BBC News. "We saw a very bright light and then there was a kind of a track, white and yellow in the sky. The explosion was so strong that some windows in our building and in the buildings that are across the road and in the city in general, the windows broke."
The Russia Times quoted Vladimir Zhirinovskyas saying, "Meteors are falling. Those are not meteors, it is Americans testing their new weapon." However, the publication also refereed to Zhirinovsky as “a politician well-known for making similar eccentric statements.”
Professor Alan Fitzsimmons, an astrophysicist at Queen's University in Belfast said there was "almost definitely" no connection between the meteor and asteroid DA14. DA14 passed within 17,200 miles of the Earth yesterday, inside the orbit of some communications satellites.