|Occurred : 6/3/1995 13:00 (Entered as : 06/03/95 13:00)
Reported: 4/3/2008 10:35:46 AM 10:35
Location: Syracuse, NY
|High altitude V-formation of 7 objects
High Altitude Formation Description On a CAVU day while driving north on I-81 about 100 miles south of Syracuse, New York at around 1 PM on June 3, 1995, I saw a low-flying small aircraft pass directly over and perpendicular to the Interstate about a half-mile ahead, then disappear over a row of trees to my right. I deduced that an airport must be nearby and began scanning the sky for other aircraft. Not noticing anything, my scan gradually rose in altitude until I noticed a V-formation of white dots flying from west to north-east. I counted seven individual dots, one on point and three on each leg. They were moving rapidly, left no contrails, and appeared to be at extremely high-altitude. They had no discernible form, appearing as small white dots-not shiny but soft white. I watched them move at a constant speed for approximately 15 to 20 seconds as they traversed 45 degrees of azimuth. At that point they appeared to slow almost imperceptibly and then vanished.
Analysis: Although this event occurred almost 13 years earlier, it is quite accurate. I had written down the particulars shortly after it happened, and my present memory of the event corresponds exactly to that written record. I have also confirmed the exact date, although the time of day is approximate.
It is impossible to tell at what altitude these objects were flying. However, I expect that they were at extremely high altitude because they had no discernible form. Commercial aircraft flying at FL330 have a clearly visible aircraft shape, but these objects were merely dots. They were clearly not birds, which display a typical individual motion as they flap their wings. These objects never varied in size, color, intensity or motion. It is quite apparent that just before they vanished from view they began a turn, giving the perception of slowing. As the turn progressed, they no longer reflected sunlight toward me and became invisible.
The angle of azimuth covered by the flight of the objects is known because they came into my view just beyond the left corner of the windshield and they disappeared almost directly ahead. Furthermore, this section of the Interstate was as straight as an arrow, for you could see the road stretch out for miles ahead with no curves whatsoever.
The duration of observation is approximate; I did not record the exact times. Estimating duration of time for short-lived events is notoriously inaccurate, unless there is some reference. Because I am cognizant of this fact, I have tried to mentally relive the event and time its duration. While observing the objects I kept pointing them out to my passenger, who never did see them. I have taken that dialog into account and added additional precious seconds to arrive at what I believe is a fairly close and extremely conservative approximation.
Given these variables, it can be estimated that at 30,000 feet the speed of the formation would be between approximately 780 and 1045 MPH, and at 50,000 feet the speed would range from approximately 1295 to 1725 MPH.