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UPDATE: About 1,000 Injured By Blast As Meteor Falls In Russia

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

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Friday, February 15, 2013

UPDATE: Interfax says nearly 1,000 people injured by falling meteor in Russia, according to officials.

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The Russian Academy of Sciences is estimating the meteor that streaked into the skies over the Ural Mountains and caused shock waves that injured more than 400 people weighed about 10 tons (11 tons avoirdupois).

The academy said in a statement hours after the Friday morning fall that the meteor entered the Earth's atmosphere at a speed of at least 54,000 kph (33,000 mph) and shattered about 30-50 kilometers (18-32 miles) above ground.

The fall caused explosions that broke glass over a wide area. The Emergency Ministry says more than 500 people sought treatment after the blasts and that 34 of them were hospitalized.

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A thick white contrail, an intense flash and sharp explosions marked the passage today of a meteor across the sky above Russia's Ural Mountains, where more than 400 people have reported injuries, many from broken glass.

The Emergency Ministry says fragments of the meteorite fell in a thinly populated area of the Chelyabinsk region. And about 6000 square feet of a roof at a zinc factory collapsed.

A ministry spokeswoman calls the event a meteor shower while another ministry official says it was a single meteorite.

The event was captured on amateur video.


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