UK & World News
Meteor: Rescue Teams Rally To Recovery Effort
A major recovery effort is under way to replace thousands of windows shattered by the shockwave from a meteor that exploded over Russia, as some 24,000 workers began arriving in the Chelyabinsk region to help relief efforts.
The shockwave blew out glass in more than 4,000 buildings in the region and injured about 1,200 people, largely with cuts from the flying debris.
Forty of those injured remained in hospital on Saturday, two of them in a serious condition, the state news agency RIA Novosti reported.
Regional governor Mikhail Yurevich said the damage from the high-altitude explosion - which was estimated to have been as powerful as 20 Hiroshima bombs - is estimated at 1bn rubles (£21m).
He promised to have the 200,000 square metres of broken windows replaced within a week.
Rescuers are also scouring the bottom of a lake for the remains of the meteor, which plunged to Earth in a fireball on Friday.
Part of the space rock, which was the size of a bus and blazed across western Siberia, is believed to have landed in the frozen Lake Chebarkul.
Curious onlookers gathered nearby were prevented from venturing out on to the lake by police as the search continued.
More than 24,000 rescuers and recovery workers have already been dispatched to the region around Chelyabinsk to help residents.
The workers will gather warm clothes and food, cover windows, and make other relief efforts. Crews from glass companies in adjacent regions have also begun to arrive.
Experts are also examining major buildings in case they have been structurally damaged by the blast.
Residents who had poured into the streets to watch the light show after spotting the initial flash were wounded by glass shattered by the subsequent sonic boom.
Experts said the meteor strike was the largest recorded in more than a century.
As the recovery mission begins in earnest, the emergencies ministry said six divers would be inspecting the lake for any pieces of meteorite.
Emergencies Minister Vladimir Puchkov added: "We have a special team working ... that is now assessing the seismic stability of buildings. We will be especially careful about switching the gas back on."
Scientists will be desperate to examine the rock for any clues about the cosmos but Mr Puchkov said no fragments had yet been discovered.
The explosion appears to have been one of the most stunning cosmic events over Russia since 1908, when an asteroid was blamed for a massive blast in Siberia.
Nasa estimated that the amount of energy released when the meteor crashed into the Earth's atmosphere was about 20 times more than the force of the Hiroshima nuclear bomb.
"We would expect an event of this magnitude to occur once every 100 years on average," said Paul Chodas of Nasa's Near-Earth Object Programme Office.
The drama happened just hours before an asteroid whizzed safely past the Earth at an unprecedented distance of 17,200 miles.
This is closer than some distant satellites and set alarm bells ringing in some Russian circles about the need for joint global action to protect Earth from space.
The Russian parliament's foreign affairs committee chief Alexei Pushkov wrote on Twitter: "Instead of fighting on Earth, people should be creating a joint system of asteroid defence."
what do you think?
Pieces of this meteorite will be worth a few quid due to how well documented it has been and the magnitude of the event. Ebay will be full of fakes
And tools will buy them.
This really is fascinating, if this meteor had exploded over a population centre i reckon we'd be looking at tens of thousands of casualties. Just goes to show you can build as many wind farms and recycle as many bottles as you like, none of that would help in the next big impact event.
But pumping some money into an orbiting earth early warning and defence system would. And could be a way of getting rid of some of the excess nuclear weapons that are all over the world. The current near earth monitoring program is lacking in any answers to space's question of 'what are you going to do about this rock thats coming towards you?' And it wouldnt cost massive amounts of extra fun-ding(seriously orange?!) aparently it cost every taxpayer in the usa 1penny out of their taxes (in todays money) to put neil armstrong on the moon. We have too many nuclear weapons to be used on earth so why not use them for something constructive.
I have to agree. But for such an orbital facility to be bulit, we need all countries who are capable to contribute and co-operate, and could you see Israel and Iran doing that? India and Pakistan. Nothing will be done because it's a problem most people are unaware about, too busy worrying about horses and foxes...
True, its a shame because when we work together we build some great things. the ISS being a prime example. Two of the countries involved in its construction, operation and maintenance were our enemies at some point in the last century.
The real sobering thing about this as well is that the russians were very lucky this time. As humanity expands and builds bigger urban areas the chances of a meteorite landing in or airbursting over an empty field,forest or lake will get very slim. Luckily these things are quite rare
As the largest country in the world you'd think the Russians would put some thought into it, as more area = more chance of taking a hit. Remember that 70s film Meteor? Just popped in my head talking about this subject.
I agree with you both their really should be better warning systems.this one thst just padt us was only discovered a year ago and by a dentist.unfortionatly humans always seem to think " its not going to happen, and if it does it will proberly happen to someone else."
your right ebay is full of meteorites mostly from america.
This is INCREDIBLE! Even an eskimo couldn't cut a hole in ice that perfectly circular! Wow! That chunk of meteorite must have been absolutely perfectly spherical. Unless, an enemy of Russia fired a perfectly circular missile at it from southern countries. Now I think of it, why are some of the videos of the meteorite in darkness and some of the videos are in daylight and it's the same meteorite? Is that because it travelled all the way across different time zones? But it's the same meteorite landing at the same time in both night time and day time. It "could" possibly be part of the asteroid from yesterday but except, I don't believe there ever was an asteroid yesterday, neither do I believe any horse meat has been found in beefburgers and I also don't believe a meteorite hit Russia. Even most astronomical photographs don't have meteorite craters that circular. It should be an ellipse if it landed at an angle. There are no lines of cracked ice around the circle?
ever heard of the flat earth society? they'd love you mate
it's not in darkness, it's just the camera adjusting to the brightness of the meteorite. there was an asteroid, i saw it.
Have you been to the lake? Have you measured the hole to see if it is a perfect circle? And i think the native population of canada and alaska prefer being called INUIT not eskimo. They consider that an insult.
I refer you to the many tens of thousands of circular craters on any body in the solar system. Look at the moon and you will see several. Also on earth's surface...
"There fell upon people great hail stones, about the weight of one talent. They repented not of their sins or sorceries or lies or abominations of nations." I took a photograph of the Moon with my camera, I'll see what craters it has. The ones I photographed aren't perfectly circular. The ones on the internet are not only grey instead of the real brown Moon colour but are circular. It's either a Biblical event from The Book of Revelations or EVEN this event is another lie.
Remember Adrian that from the perspective you look at the moon none of the craters will look circular, as you view them from an angle. Tycho is round. Copernicus also to name the best known.
Adrian - You really do need help, you know!
Do you suffer from paranoia Adrian?
I-don't-think-of-it-as-being-paranoid-to-wonder-if-someone-has-deliberately-faked-a-meteorite-exploding-over-Russia. If Eskimos find the term Eskimo offensive, how long will it be before English is an usuitable word to call the English? Oh-yeah-and-so-how-do-you-explain-all-the-fake-UFO-videos-for-instance-and-so-there? Is this just another one of those?
That meteorite was a black box from an aeroplane and it's floating on top with a white arrow on the side!!!!
I know black boxes are red.Just joking!!
I know that it is the russian scientists that believe this asteriod will be back in 1936 and could hit the earth the next time.
PTB knew this was coming hopefully and the suspected one in Cuba which raises the question why no one was informed. Makes one realise that should the big one really come they will say nothing then either. We will be well and trully on our own.