|Occurred : 10/12/2014 20:05 (Entered as : 10/12/2014 20:05)
Reported: 10/12/2014 10:27:55 PM 22:27
Location: Wilmington, DE
|Lots of pulsing red lights flying in formation, against the wind, south of the Philadelphia metro area
On Sunday October 12th, 2014, a little after 8pm EST, my husband had gone outside to turn off the lights in our detached garage. He immediately shouted back to me to come outside and bring the camera – his tone was urgent.
I fumbled for a moment getting the camera, and when I stepped out our back door I was aghast! The sky to the north of our home was lit up like a Christmas tree with a large cluster of red pulsating lights that were flying in formation from east to west. I set the camera to video and started filming. I was standing on the top step and my husband was below me, and to my left, at ground level. He told me to step down for a better viewpoint. I had difficulty doing so because I couldn’t see the stairs in the dark. He helped me down, and I filmed all the while. The video jiggles around during that time.
The sight of these lights was startling. The lights pulsed from a dim glowing orange red to a strong, deep red. While they moved in one large formation, each light was variable enough in its speed and pulsing that they appeared to be individual crafts, as opposed to many lights on one large craft. I estimate there were between 25 and 50 crafts. They moved in unison, but did not pulse in unison. The visual effect was scintillating, like Christmas tree lights that fade in and out rapidly and randomly. They moved slower than the average airplane, and they made no noise.
My husband ran inside to grab the phone during the sighting. He intended to call our next door neighbor so there would be another witness. As he did so, the lights began to fade out and disappear. I called to him that they were disappearing! He abandoned the phone and returned outside to catch the last of the crafts.
There were some stragglers that followed after the large formation was gone. These later craft were slightly different from the others; they flew more in a single file line than in a cluster, they seemed to be larger lights than the others and the color was more orange. While their color also pulsed, it seemed slower and stronger than the formation lights. I tried zooming in on one of these craft.
My SD card ran out of space during filming and I had to run inside and change to a new card. I resumed filming on the new card. I also tried to zoom in and take some still photos, but the shutter speed was too long for a hand held shot. (I got photos of smeared lights). At some point during the sighting, I checked my watch and the time was 8:10pm.
Upon reviewing the videos, the red craft are not as visible in the film as they were to the naked eye. The brighter ones appear in the video, but the camera didn’t capture them all; the sky was shimmering with them! Also, reviewing the video I noticed some larger, more orangeish craft on the upper right side. These look like those other craft that came afterwards – but they appear to be flanking the mass of red sparklers. I didn’t realize this until watching the video.
In my video, you can hear the traffic from I-495, which is nearby. There is no sound to the crafts that I could discern live, or in my video. I could not discern a shape to the crafts with my naked eye. To my view, I could only see them as lights.
The weather conditions at the time of the event were chilly with a partly cloudy sky. The patchy clouds were semi-transparent, low, feathery type. The clear parts of the sky were clear enough to see stars. I estimate the temperature was about 55-60 degrees. NOAA wind maps indicate winds from the south at 3000’ and from the west at 6000’ this evening.
I called our local police station to ask if anyone had reported some unusual lights, and the trooper replied that they did have a man come in around 10pm to report some unusual lights in the sky. I also called the Philadelphia Airport to learn if they had any explanation for strange lights this evening, such as an air show, or other events involving flying objects, etc. They said they would normally be informed of these kinds of events, but they have no such events on their calendar for this evening.
My background: I’m 49 years old and have worked in banking most of my working life. I enjoy the night sky, sometimes with a telescope, but usually with the naked eye. While I have little knowledge of airplanes, I have lived under the landing pattern of the Philadelphia Airport all of my life. I see planes in the night sky all the time – I’ve never seen anything like these lights.