Man wonders if possible meteorite destroyed home: ‘I heard a big bang’
NEVADA COUNTY, Calif. (KCRA) - Officials are looking into the possibility that a meteorite may have destroyed a California home. The house caught fire after several witnesses described a bright ball of light falling from the sky.
Dustin Procita was at home in Nevada County, California, with his two dogs Friday night when he says something hit his home and started a fire around 7:30.
“I heard a big bang. I started to smell smoke, and I went onto my porch. It was completely engulfed in flames,” he said.
He managed to escape and save one dog but, sadly, not the other. His house was also destroyed.
After battling the flames for several hours, firefighters are now investigating what started the fire.
Witnesses from all over the region saw a bright ball in the sky and followed its path to see where it landed. That path might have led to Procita’s home.
“They said it was a meteor. I’ve always watched meteor showers and stuff as a kid, but I definitely didn’t look forward to them landing in my yard or through my roof,” Procita said.
Penn Valley Fire Department Capt. Josh Miller says he didn’t see the bright ball but soon heard about it from witnesses.
“I did not see what it was, but from everybody I talked to, it was a flaming ball falling from the sky and landed in that general area,” Miller said. “I had one individual tell me about it first, and like, ‘OK, I’ll put that in the back of my mind.’ But then more people – two, three, four more – started coming in and talking about it.”
Procita reacted to video footage of the ball of light.
“Oh, wow, looks like a flaming basketball coming out of the sky,” he said. “Definitely feel very lucky that it was 30 feet away from me and not five.”
As Procita and his wife pick up the pieces of what’s left of their home, they realize they could have lost much more and believe the odds may be in their favor.
“They said it’s a one in four trillion chance, so I guess I might be buying a lottery ticket today,” Procita said.
Miller says it will take about two weeks to determine the cause of the fire.
The Southern Taurids meteor showers are currently happening in the area, with the peak taking place on Saturday. NASA said there would be an increase of bright balls visible in the sky.
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