Close, but no city-smashing asteroid

Jul 29, 2019, 7:28 PM
Photo Courtesy, NASA

SALT LAKE CITY —  This is a story about what-ifs and maybes.

And, maybe, we should throw in a “whew” as well.

That’s because Earth dodged a bullet last week.

Or more accurately it dodged, an asteroid. Or an asteroid dodged the Earth, either way, it didn’t happen.

But the real story to tell is why didn’t we hear about the asteroid, named 2019 OK, sooner?  Usually, if an asteroid is approaching Earth or is about to approach Earth there are a lot of smart people that know about it and they talk about it.

People like Patrick Wiggins, Utah’s own Solar System Ambassador. He spoke with KSL Newsradio’s Grant Nielsen Monday afternoon and equated the approach of this asteroid to the way bad guys came into the picture in old-timey westerns:  in the same direction as the sun.

“A big old rock is traveling towards us but because it’s coming from the direction of the sun we couldn’t see it coming,” Wiggins told KSL Newsradio. “We did see it a day or so out, but that wouldn’t have been enough time even if it was going to impact.”

According to the SONEAR Observatory in Brazil first reported the asteroid on July 24th. They say it was between 187 and 426 feet. In other words, a “city killer.”

“It certainly would have made a lot of noise. A big concussion reaching the ground. Whether or not any of the big pieces would reach the ground … it would have broken up on the way through,” said Wiggins.

“But if it had been a solid iron asteroid that hit a city? Yeah, that’d be really bad!”

And Wiggins left KSL Newsradio listeners, and fill-in host Grant Nielsen, with this tidbit.

“This makes the twelfth asteroid that’s come closer than the moon in the last twelve months!”

But take heart! NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory has established a Planetary Defense Coordination Office that looks for ways to deflect an asteroid from a predicted impact with Earth.

Still, some so-called Near Earth Objects are too small to detect.

Today’s Top Stories

All News

The short range missile was fired early Sunday morning local time from the Taechon area of North Py...
Yoonjung Seo, Junko Ogura and Larry Register, CNN

North Korea fires ballistic missile into waters off east coast of Korean peninsula

North Korea has fired a ballistic missile into the waters off the east coast of the Korean peninsula, according to officials in both South Korea and Japan.
1 day ago
Anderson was arrested the morning of Sept. 24, 2022, by West Valley Police on felony child sexual a...
Waverly Golden

First grade teacher in Magna arrested on felony child sexual abuse charges

Elk Run Elementary first grade teacher Dale Anderson was arrested this morning on felony child sexual abuse charges.
1 day ago
The Nephi City Police said in a Facebook post that a man was luring children to his vehicle yesterd...
Waverly Golden

Be on lookout for suspicious vehicle in Nephi

The Nephi City Police said in a Facebook post that a man was luring children to his vehicle yesterday afternoon.
1 day ago
Aaron Fotheringham, aka "Wheelz" from Nitro Circus taught and performed tricks at Wheelchair Palooz...
Waverly Golden

Wheelchair Palooza at Woodward Park City

Aaron Fotheringham, aka "Wheelz" from Nitro Circus taught and performed tricks at Wheelchair Palooza in Park City.
1 day ago
Semi CAX...
Simone Seikaly

Two-vehicle crash involving a semi closes Highway 138 on Friday

A two-vehicle crash involving a fuel truck on Friday morning closed Highway 138 in Tooele County.
1 day ago
WWE Essential...
Zoe Sottile, CNN

John Cena breaks Make-A-Wish record after granting 650 wishes

Actor, wrestling legend, and perpetual meme subject John Cena has completed a new accomplishment: breaking the world record for most wishes granted through the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

a worker with a drill in an orange helmet installs a door in the house...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

Home improvement tip: Increase the value of your home by weatherproofing doors

Make sure your home is comfortable before the winter! Seasonal maintenance keeps your home up to date. Read our tips on weatherproofing doors.
Curb Appeal...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

How to have the best of both worlds for your house | Home security and curb appeal

Protect your home and improve its curb appeal with the latest security solutions like beautiful garage doors and increased security systems.
A paper reading IRS, internal revenue service is pictured...
Jordan Wilcox

The best strategies for dealing with IRS tax harassment | You have options!

Learn how to deal with IRS tax harassment. This guide will teach you how to stop IRS phone calls and letters, and how to handle an IRS audit.
spend a day at Bear Lake...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

You’ll love spending the day at Bear Lake | How to spend a day at Bear Lake

Bear Lake is a place that needs to be experienced. Spend a day at Bear Lake.
Prescription opioids can be disposed of during National Prescription Take Back Day...
Know Your Script

Prescription opioid misuse | How to protect your family from the opioid epidemic

Studies have shown that prescription opioid misuse has increased since COVID-19. So what do you need to know about these opioids?
national heart month...
Intermountain Healthcare

National Heart Month: 5 Lifestyle Changes to Make Today to Keep You Heart Healthy

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. One person dies every 36 seconds in the United States from cardiovascular disease
Close, but no city-smashing asteroid