Russian meteor shower injures hundreds, damages Metro’s Chelyabinsk office

Screen shot 2013-02-15 at 9.34.03 AM
Credit: YouTube

Over 500 people have been injured after a surprise meteor shower struck central Russia Friday morning. Video reports show a streaking fireball that broke up and rained fragments onto the Urals region.

Most of the injuries are thought to be cuts and bruises but not life-threatening. The shower did serious structural damage, particularly to the city of Chelyabinsk, some 1,500 kilometres east of Moscow, where Metro’s office was damaged with the roof and windows smashed.

“First there was a blinding flash. My wife and I were in a panic wondering if there was a war,” said Metro Chelyabinsk editor Oleg Lastochkin. “Four minutes after the flash, we felt a shock wave and the apartment windows were shaking. Street car sirens went off and then we heard five or six explosions.”

When the editor arrived at the office, “there was broken glass and one of the staffers was wounded by shrapnel. I drove her to the hospital, which was completely full.”

The lack of information from authorities frustrated Lastochkin. “The police reported that the alleged meteor rain was known in advance. So why not warn people?” he said.

 

First person account from Metro Chelyabinsk editor Oleg Lastochkin

Armageddon came at 9:30am. I was at home when I first saw a blinding flash. At first, I thought it was a headlight but it blinded me for a moment. Five minutes after that flash, I felt a shock wave. Windows began to shatter, car sirens were roaring. And finally we heard an explosion… five or six of them.

My wife and I started to panic, wondering if a war had begun; we saw a trail in the sky, which was clearly not left by an airplane.

Everyone on the minibus taxi en route to the office were talking about the meteor. Some mobile phone networks stopped working.

When I arrived to the Metro office, there was broken glass all over the floor. The room was filled with flumes of dust. One of my staff was injured by glass shrapnel, so we took her to the hospital.

The police reported that the meteor shower was known in advance. So why didn’t they warn people?



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Mayor reveals new tech hub Digital.NYC

Mayor Bill de Blasio revealed Digital.NYC on Wednesday, a new online platform aimed at connecting all things tech in New York City. The public-private partnership…

Local

Falling debris hits two men in Times Square

Two men were taken to the hospital Wednesday morning after being hit by falling debris from 110 feet above Times Square. Nancy Greco from the…

Local

Queens Assemblyman William Scarborough accused of misusing campaign…

Queens Assemblyman William Scarborough has been indicted on state and federal charges for allegedly withdrawing campaign funds as cash for personal use. Scarborough, a Democrat…

News

U.S. Secret Service director Pierson resigns under fire

U.S. Secret Service Director Julia Pierson resigned under fire on Wednesday after a series of security lapses came to light.

Television

TV watch list, Wednesday, Oct. 1: 'Criminal Minds,'…

The "Criminal Minds" team adds some supernatural assistance, as the "Ghost Whisperer" herself, Jennifer Love Hewitt, joins the show. She's playing an FBI agent, but you never know when someone…

Music

See the most popular Pandora station in your…

Who knew Bachata music was so popular?

The Word

The Word: Twilight just won't die

You thought our "Twilight" days were behind us, didn't you? Well think again. Series creator Stephenie Meyer (who would rather you not ask about "Twilight"…

Going Out

Which NYC restaurant lost its three-star Michelin rating?

A record 73 restaurants in New York City collected coveted Michelin stars on Tuesday as a mix of trendy spots and fine-dining stalwarts underscored the…

NFL

Rex Ryan fields more questions about Geno Smith,…

The idea Geno Smith will be replaced by backup Michael Vick appears to be all smoke, as the Jets are intent to ride with their second-round draft pick.

NFL

Will Beatty playing like franchise left tackle again…

Left tackle Will Beatty, who is the elder-statesman of Giants’ line, has turned around his season and become a consistent force on Manning’s blindside.

NFL

John Conner back with Jets for second stint

He'll be back. It's "Terminator 2" for the Jets, who brought back John Conner to the team on Tuesday after placing fullback Tommy Bohanon on…

NFL

Fantasy football: Ben Tate to break out, Larry…

Fantasy football: Ben Tate to break out, Larry Donnell will stay solid

Career

Creating a support system for minority women in…

When Kathryn Finney founded digitalundivided — an organization devoted to engaging minority communities with the tech world — she didn’t know quite what to expect.…

Sex

We can learn a lot from animals about…

There’s a lot we can learn about love from the birds and the bees — and the chickens, monkeys and squirrels that we share the…

Style

Saint Laurent

Our review of the Saint Laurent Spring '15 show at Paris Fashion Week.

Style

Céline: Paris Fashion Week Spring 2015

Our review of the Celine Spring '15 show during Paris Fashion Week.