Thursday, September 22, 2011

Woman Hit by Space Junk, Lives to Tell the Tale

And you thought lightning strikes were rare.

A defunct NASA satellite is set to plunge to Earth, with a 1-in-3,200 chance that someone could get hurt, according to the space agency. That has many wondering: What’s it like to get hit with a piece of space junk?

Lottie Williams -- perhaps the only person in history to ever get hit by falling space junk -- knows the answer. Back in January of 1997, she and two friends were walking through a park in Tulsa, Oklahoma around 3:30 a.m. when they saw a huge fireball streaking from the skies.

“We were stunned, in awe,” Williams told FoxNews.com. She thought she’d just witnessed a shooting star. “It was beautiful.”

Less than thirty minutes later, that awe turned to fear.

“We were still walking through the park when I felt a tapping on my shoulder,” Williams explained. With no one near her at the time, she started to run, thinking a stranger had appeared out of the shadows. Then she heard something hit the ground behind her.

“The weight was comparable to an empty soda can,” Williams told FoxNews.com. “It looked like a piece of fabric except when you tap it, it sounded metallic." Williams was sure she’d found a piece of a shooting star. more