UFO ROUNDUP Volume 3 Number 33 August 17, 1998

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Twenty UFOs, described as “shiny silver spheres,” flew over a number of farms near Quirindi, New South Wales, Australia last weekend, littering the ground with cobweb-like filaments called “angel hair.”

According to USA Today, “Residents of a small Australian community swear that they saw cobwebs fall from the sky after UFOs passed overhead. Dozens of residents of Quirindi called Australia’s National UFO Hotline after the incident.”

According to the Tamworth, N.S.W. North Daily Leader, “Mrs. E. Stansfield, 61 years (old), said that she saw cobwebs falling from the sky. She saw twenty silver balls which passed overhead. When she went out to her daughter, she too was covered in fine strands of cobweb. When she tried to pick it up, it disintegrated in her hand. The family car had cobwebs all over it.”

The incident took place at 5:04 p.m. on Sunday, August 9, 1998. Quirindi is just north of the Liverpool mountain range, about 70 kilometers (42 miles) southwest of Tamworth, N.S.W. and 300 kilometers (180 miles) northwest of Sydney.

Australian researcher Raymond Brooks reported that the “various craft” performed aerobatic maneuvers over the farms “for 1.5 hours, including the release of ‘angel hair.'” (See the Tamworth, N.S.W. North Daily Leader for August 10, 1998 and USA Today for August 11, 1998. Many thanks to Raymond Brooks, Diane Hamilton and Ross Dowe of Australia/New Zealand 24-Hour UFO Hotline for this news story.)


An “intricate pattern” of crop circles appeared in a wheat field in Hubbard, Oregon (population 1,881) on July 22, 1998.

“Researchers and curious onlookers raced to find an intricate pattern of circles and pathways” in the wheat field belonging to farmer Doug Aamodt. “The large flowing design was first show on KOIN-TV (in Oregon) July 23 and drew people from throughout the Willamette Valley to steal a look.”

“Glenna Sherwood, administrative assistant for the Hubbard Police Department, said people were calling and coming to the police station almost nonstop.”

“‘It was like (New York City’s) Grand Central Station around here,’ she said. ‘You couldn’t believe the phone calls.'”

“Hubbard Police Chief David Dryden said several people called to discuss aliens, and officers reported receiving calls from people asking that the area be cordoned off ” so that trained researchers might investigate the site.

“Keith Ardinger, a part-time crop circle researcher from Portland (Oregon), said he believed that the crop circle was probably caused by microwave radiation. Ardinger spent half a day looking for the site, armed with the knowledge that it was located in a field with (electrical) power poles along Whiskey Hill Road.”

“Carol Pedersen, coordinator for the Oregon branch of the Centre for Crop Circle Studies, said swirl patterns in the wheat and the color of the nodes located on grain stalks were possible indications that internal change had occurred.”

“Doug Aamodt, owner of the field, said he went to see about this and about the (crop) diagram. He said he became aware of the circles when Ardinger and fellow researcher Pedersen came to ask for permission to study the site.”

Hubbard is on Oregon Highway 99E approximately 26 miles (41 kilometers) south of Portland.

“Aamodt jokingly said maybe he could start selling T-shirts at the field. ‘It could be worth something,’ he said with a laugh.” (See the Woodburn, Oregon Independent for July 28, 1998, “The truth is out there…near Hubbard,” by Karen Tate, page one. Many thanks to Stig Agermose and Errol Bruce-Knapp for forwarding the article.)


On Tuesday, August 11, 1998, just after 10 p.m., a giant triangular UFO flew over Australia’s sparsely- populated Northern Territory (N.T.) and disappeared in the Gulf of Carpentaria, just north of the island continent.

According to Australian Broadcasting Corp.’s Online News, “There have been several reports of a bright light travelling across the sky, from Alice Springs at 7:30 p.m., dropping into the Gulf of Carpentaria in Queensland after 10 p.m.”

“The manager of a roadhouse south of Tennant Creek, N.T. claimed mysterious lights in the sky last night looked like fireworks.”

“Lou Farkas, from Wycliffe Well, who markets the roadhouse as a site for UFO sightings, said he heard a ‘bang’ as well as seeing the light.”

Describing the UFO, Farkas said “Imagine the shape of a fighting boomerang–you know how it’s got that bend in it–so the light was formed, and it was probably two or three inches” wide as it crossed the sky, “so it could have been quite a big object. But it was formed completely. So it started, then fomed the image of the boomerang, then it held that shape until there was an explosion, then it disappeared.”

Tennant Creek is located about 600 kilometers (360 miles) north of Alice Springs and about 1,650 kilometers (990 miles) northwest of Sydney.

“Astronomers at the Tidbinbilla tracking station in Canberra say a bright light that shot across the Northern Territory sky last night was most likely a meteor.”

“Territory police say there were sightings from Alice Springs in the south to the Arnhem coast in the north, with some witnesses claiming night turned into day.”

(Editor’s Comment: Sounds like the case in Zimbabwe three months ago.)

“Duncan Osborne from the Deep Space Tracking Station says the reports are consistent with the effects of a meteorite entering the earth’s atmosphere and burning up.” (See Australian Broadcasting Corp. Online News for August 12, 1998. Many thanks to Stig Agermose and Errol Bruce-Knapp for forwarding this report.)


On Monday, August 10, 1998, at 11:30 p.m., eyewitnesses in Sedan, a small town in the department of Ardennes, 210 kilometers (126 miles) northeast of Paris, spotted “a triangular UFO with a bright white light and two little red lights in the rear.”

Witnesses also reported seeing “smaller white lights” on the craft’s underside, forming an arrowhead shape.

According to ufologist Jean-Luc Lemaire of the Centre des Etudes des OVNIs Francais (CEOF), the triangular UFO “was seen in thirty communities” around Sedan.

Over the cities of Charleville and Meziere, 20 kilometers (12 miles) north of Sedan, the UFO was seen “descending from a high altitude.”

Just before 2 a.m. on Tuesday, August 11, 1998, the UFO was seen in Carignan, 22 kilometers (13 miles) southeast of Sedan.

According to the newspaper Le Courrier, “An unidentified flying object with a triangular shape, moving at a low altitude above the cities of Sedan and Carignan, has been observed by over 150 people. Two youthful amateur videographers filmed a short sequence that night.”

The video was broadcast on the midnight news show on France’s nationwide Channel FR3 on Thursday, August 13, and on Antenna 2. The video shows the UFO trying to dodge the camera’s viewfinder as it flies low over the Ardennes.

The CEOF investigation continues. (See the newspaper Le Courrier/Le Progres of Saone et Loire for August 14, 1998, page 30. Merci beaucoup aux Michel Granger et Thierry Garnier de SOS OVNI pour ces nouvelles.)


A “vast gleaming disc” appeared in the night sky over Scartho, a suburb of Grimsby, Lincolnshire, UK at the end of July 1998.

“A UFO has been spotted over Scartho fork, according to a report. The vast gleaming disc hovered over the roundabout (rotary in the USA–J.T.) and then soared upwards, said the Springfield Road resident.”

“‘The first time I saw the UFO, I was frightened. The disc gave off a red glow and then turned green,’ he said. ‘The disc spun off into the night sky, moving this way and that in an apparently random way. Who knows where it was going?’ he said.”

“One week later, the disc returned on a moonless night, he said.”

“‘It was definitely the same disc and emitted the same color light. It was hovering high up over the roundabout,’ he said.”

“UFO expert Dave Jackson of the Scanthorpe research group Hangar 18 said, ‘We have not had sightings in Scartho before, but in recent weeks there have been reportings of activity in Immingham and Goole.'”

Grimsby, Lincs. is 140 miles (224 kilometers) north of London. (See the Grimsby Evening Telegraph for August 5, 1998, “Flying saucer sighted at Scartho.” Many thanks to Errol Bruce-Knapp for forwarding the newspaper article.)


A strange incident took place near Skelmersdale, Lancashire, UK the evening of July 26, 1998.

“Emergency Rescue launched a full-scale rescue search after people said they saw a microlight aircraft plunge from the sky a ball of flames. Skelmersdale police, paramedics and firefighters were joined by Lancashire Police helicopters during the alert…”

“Eyewitnesses said they saw the one-man aircraft nosedive into a field close to the Rainford Bypass with smoke trailing behind. But nothing was found after an extensive two-hour search of the field in the Rainford and Bickerstaffe area.”

“Skelmersdale leading firefighter Tony Cavanagh said, ‘We got the emergency call that an aircraft was in distress over the Rainford Bypass. After a lengthy search we were unable to locate it. I think it’s a case for Mulder and Scully. They’re probably searching the top of the bypass now.”

Skelmersdale is 10 miles (16 kilometers) northeast of Liverpool and 170 miles (272 kilometers) northwest of London. (See the Ormskirk, Maghull and Skelmersdale Advertiser for July 30, 1998. Many thanks to Gerry Lovell of Far Search for this report.)


On Saturday, August 1, 1998, at 8 p.m., a man in Fairfax, Virginia (population 19,622) was outdoors when he suddenly noticed “something ‘shoot off’ the moon.”

Peering in that direction, he watched it “develop into an object that was a bright but small object. somewhat long and thin, but maintaining a steady shape, speed and brightness.”

The UFO’s speed “was said to be rapid but not excessively fast.”

“The object followed a curved path almost down to the horizon, then changed course and then streaked very fast directly ovehead. It was much closer when it passed overhead…”

Fairfax is on Highway 50 approximately 22 miles (35 kilometers) southwest of Washington, D.C. (Many thanks to Kenneth Young of Tri-States Advocates for Scientific Knowledge, T.A.S.K., for forwarding this report.)


The launch of the top-secret Vortex satellite ended in disaster 40 seconds after liftoff when its Titan 4A missile exploded.

The 20-story missile rose from its launch pad at Cape Canaveral, Florida at 7:30 a.m. on Wednesday, August 12, 1998 but then “pitched downward and exploded without warning.”

“Two seconds later, controllers sent a destruct command to break the rocket into smaller pieces and reduce the threat to people on the ground.”

“The double boom could be heard miles away and set off car alarms around the area. Most if not all of the debris landed a half-mile offshore.”

The Titan 4A “carried 500,000 pounds of highly toxic fuel. There were no reports or injuries.”

Manufactured by Lockheed Martin Corp., the rocket was carrying the Vortex satellite for the USA’s National Reconnaissance Office (NRO). “The failure was one of the costliest in the history of the U.S. space program. The rocket’s value was estimated at $300 million and the satellite’s at $800 million to $1 billion.”

“Analysts said the Titan was carrying an eavesdropping satellite, codenamed Vortex, that would have listened in on military and government communications in world hot spots such as the Middle East, China and India and Pakistan.”

“‘My initial thought is, ‘We’re hurt. This is a sad day for the United States Air Force,’ said Brig. Gen. Randy Starbuck said at a news conference after the blast.” (See USA Today for August 13, 1998, “Rocket, spy satellite explode.”)

(Editor’s Comment: First the Galaxy IV, then the SOHO, now Vortex. This has been a rough summer for satellites from Earth, hasn’t it?)


Last month was the warmest July in all of recorded history, with heat waves in some surprising places.

On Monday, August 10, 1998, USA Vice President Albert Gore released data from the National Climactic Data Center in Asheville, North Carolina, showing that temperature in July 1998 “more than half a degree higher than July 1997, the planet’s previous warmest month.” The average temperture for July 1998 was 61.7 dgrees Fahrenheit.

“A heat wave slammed north Texas with 29 consecutive days of triple-digit (Fahrenheit) temperatures in July and August. The heat is blamed for 126 deaths in the state.”

“Heat in the Middle East has killed 52 people and sickened hundreds, according to the Associated Press. Even Egyptians, used to toiling in the desert, have taken to working at night to avoid the 100-degrees daytime heat that has persisted for three weeks.”

“Temperatures have hit 122 degrees (Fahrenheit) in Kuwait, where pools have equipment to chill the water.”

“Temperatures soared to 100 in Paris on Monday (August 10), and even higher elsewhere in France. Locals and tourists splashed in fountains near the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre museum.” (See USA Today for August 12, 1998, “July breaks worldwide temperature record.”)

According to CNN Interactive, scientists found evidence of melting at the Pine Island glacier in central Antarctica on July 24, 1998. The new melting “is more significant than the melting of Larsen’s Ice Ledge (LIL) because the LIL is in the northernmost part of the continent” and further away from the South Pole.

According to CNN Interactive, “A melting Antarctic glacier could lead to the collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) causing global sea levels to rise up to 20 feet (6.6 meters), researchers said Thursday.”

“Isn’t this what happens when a pond begins to melt?” said Drumvalo Meclhizedek of the Prophet’s Conference in Yucatan. “If the ice is melting in the Antarctic winter now, what will happen in four to six months as we approach the Antarctic summer?”

(Editor’s Comment: I didn’t need to hear that. I really didn’t need to hear that.)

The big danger in Antarctica is that the WAIS might start “calving,” or dropping humongous icebergs into the sea. In this event, a huge tidal wave would race northward across the Indian Ocean. The primary wave would sweep over the Maldive Islands, rise high above the shallow Laccadive Sea and then smash into the southern tip of India and the neighboring Island of Sri Lanka.

In India, endangered seaside communities might include Mattancheri, Vaikam, Kottayam, Alleppey, Haripad, Kayankulam, Kilikollu, Kundara, Quilon, Attingal, Ambasamudram, Trivandrum, Kolachel and Kanniyakumari.

On Sri Lanka, cities in the danger zone might include Colombo, the national capital, and Negombo, Chilaw, Dehiwala, Moratuwa, Galle, Panadura, Kalutara, Ambalangoda, Matara and Weligama. (Many thanks to Drumvalo Melchizedek for forwarding the CNN report.)

(Editor’s Comment: Note to our readers in Sri Lanka: If you hear about a tidal wave heading your way from Antarctica, head straight for Mount Pidurutalagala. At a height of 2,524 meters (8,329 feet), it should be the safest place on the island.)

from the UFO Files…


When people ask your editor, “How come you’re so interested in flying saucers?” I reply, “I’ve seen one.” And since this is the thirty-fifth anniversary of the sighting, I thought I’d share it with you readers.

It was Sunday, August 18, 1963 (And has the world changed since then!). I was 13 years old, and we were gathered for a family reunion cookout at the home of my grandparents, John and Alice Trainor, at 36 Malta Street in Seekonk, Massachusetts, just east of the Rhode Island state line.

At about 3:30 p.m., because it was so sunny and hot, I decided to find a shady spot and catch up on my reading. I found a backyard lounge chair in the shade of my grandmother’s lilac bushes. I began reading a DC comic book–the aptly-named Mystery in Space. Adam Strange, Alanna, Sardath–all my favorite people on my favorite planet, Rann. Out of the corner of my eye I spotted a bright gleam. I was facing due east. Up fron the pine trees came this bright object, obviously reflecting the sun, which was behind me. It rose in a southerly direction from a point 20 degrees above the horizon to 45 degrees above the horizon. Airplane, I thought, and went back to my reading.

A few minutes later, I looked up from the page and was startled to find the bright object in the exact same position. It hadn’t moved at all. I frowned, putting down the book. What is that thing?

Staring at it, I could see that it was a flattened disc, bright silver in color, nearly as shiny as the chrome bumper on my father’s 1955 Chevrolet Bel-Air. It had definite edges and it hovered motionless in the blue sky. I’d estimate that it was about a mile east of me, somewhere above then-rural Arcade Avenue.

I heard my relatives chatting in the front yard and realized they couldn’t see the object. So I hollered, “Hey! Come here! You’ve got to see this!”

They ignored me. The hubbub of conversation went on. I hollered again. “Get out here–quick!”

Still no response. My throat getting hoarse, I tried again. “Come on! You’re missing it!”

Minutes passed as I watched the daylight disc. Then it zipped away in a southeasterly direction, taking precisely two seconds to reach the horizon. I know because I was counting, “One thousand, two thousand,” and it was gone.

I blinked at the horizon, thinking, I just saw a flying saucer!

While sitting there, I heard a tremendous thundering behind me. Jumping up, I saw a U.S. Navy jet fighter come barreling over the neighborhood, afterburners at full roar. The plane flew towards the southeast, following the same trajectory the disc had two minutes earlier.

I have seen a lot of aircraft during the ensuing thirty-five years. But I have never seen any airplane anywhere, not even the F-16, match the breathless speed of that flattened silver disc.

I do not know what the disc was. But I can identify the jet. It was a Vought F-8 Crusader, with the black letters NAVY clearly visible on the underside of the wings.

Many years later, I happened to read the NICAP book, THE UFO EVIDENCE, and learned that two silver daylight discs had been seen by a pair of teenaged boys, just a few years older than myself, in Biddeford, Maine at 12:30 p.m. on August 18, 1963.

Even more surprising, I read Mr. Joshi’s biography of H.P. Lovecraft in 1996 and learned that, in 1903, at the age of thirteen, Lovecraft used to roam the woods in Seekonk along the state line. That, of course, is the old Martin farm in Seekonk, which was sold and subdivided into streets–Malta, Fay and Hunt Streets– around 1910. A decade later, in 1921, my grandfather bought the bungalow on Malta Street, most likely unaware that the land had once been a favorite haunt of Lovecraft’s.

I was even more surprised to learn from Joshi’s book that Lovecraft and his mother, the former Susan Sarah Phillips, daughter of the notorious Whipple V. Phillips, spent 1908 in White River Junction, Vermont, a town and time period known to all students of Charles Fort.

What does it all mean? I have no idea. All I know is that, thirty-five years ago, I saw a silver disc hover in broad afternoon daylight, and it kindled my lifelong interest in the phenomenon of UFOs.

Here’s another anniversary for August 18. On that date in 1587, Virginia Dare became the first child of British ancestry to be born in North America. She was born at Sir Walter Raleigh’s colony at Roanoke In Virginia. The War of the Spanish Armada prevented Britain from contacting the Roanoke colony for four years. When a British ship finally came calling in 1591, there found to colony abandoned and no trace of the colonists. The only clue to the colonists’ fate was a mysterious word, Croatan, carved into the bark of a tree.

Join us next weekend for more saucer news from “the paper that goes home–UFO Roundup.” See you then.

UFO ROUNDUP: Copyright 1998 by Masinaigan Productions, all rights reserved. Readers may post news items from UFO Roundup on their websites or in newsgroups provided that they credit the newsletter and its editor by name and list the date of issue in which the item first appeared.

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