Date sent:        Fri, 10 Oct 1997 17:02:59 +0100 (BST)
From:             Jonathan Shanklin <
Copies to:
Subject:          Re: More on El Paso Fireball

The Draconid meteors are associated with comet Giacobini-Zinner, but are
usually only seen when the comet is near perihelion.  Unfortunately it is
not near perihelion until this time next year, so the fireball is unlikely
to be associated with the meteor stream.

Jon Shanklin
British Antarctic Survey, Cambridge, England
British Astronomical Association, comet section

Date sent:        Fri, 10 Oct 1997 10:15:02 -0400 (EDT)
From:             Benny J Peiser <
Subject:          More on El Paso Fireball
Priority:         NORMAL


On Thu, 09 Oct 1997 23:47:47 -0400 (EDT)

Below is the newspaper article retrieved at the following
There isn't much good info except apparent possible meteorite
droppings. The fire sounds like a coincidence and not related to
the fireball to me.
George Zay

Meteor blast shakes El Paso

    Authorities throughout the city are now saying the cause of
the huge blast that occurred just before 1:00 p.m. El Paso time
was a meteor.
     A chopper for the El Paso Police Department has found the
impact site which is located 27 miles east of El Paso and 20 miles
north of a border patrol checkpoint. Police say the chopper crew
is reporting that the scorched area is about an acre in size.
     The blast was heard throughout El Paso and surrounding areas
as far as 100 miles away. Calls began flooding police lines with
witnesses saying they saw a huge bright light and then heard a
massive explosion followed by a cloud of white smoke. There have
also been unconfirmed reports that debris were falling from the
     Experts speculate the only possible cause was a meteor, as
surrounding military installations and airports report all
aircraft in the region at that time have been accounted for.
     Authorities right now aren’t positive - but today’s incident
could have been a meteor shower that was predicted to happen
sometime between October 6-10 above the skies of El Paso.
     A quick check of Internet sites this afternoon shows the
shower maybe associated with periodic comet Giacobini-Zinner. The
shower is predicted to be very slow in movement and generally has a
yellowish coloring. Predictions of this meteor shower date back to
as early as 1915 when astronomer Reverend M. Davidson observed
that periodic comets might be capable of producing meteor showers.
Davidson later calculated the distance of the meteors from earth
and actually predicted the meteors could pass near the earth on
October 9th during specific dates including 1926, 1952, 1972 and
     Today’s draconid meteor shower may also explain last year’s
meteor shower caught on videotape for the nation by NewsChannel
Nine photographer Bob Thomas. That meteor shower hit October 6.

CCCMENU CCC for 1997