|Occurred : 5/17/2018 21:45 (Entered as : 05/17/18 21:45)
Reported: 5/20/2018 9:31:59 AM 09:31
Location: Everglades, FL
|"Follow the leader" lights over the Florida Everglades.
On the evening of May 17, 2018, I was on my sailboat anchored in the Little Shark River in the Everglades of Florida. The evening was very dark with a glow on the eastern horizon caused by light pollution from the Miami area of the southern tip of Florida. The stars were out and bright and the sound of high flying planes was slightly audible along with the blinking lights of their flight overhead.
At approximately 2145 I saw bright flashing lights approaching from the west and I said "here comes the light show". I thought at the moment it was a helicopter, maybe up from the Keys doing a night training flight. I quickly realized that was not the case. The lights, which were flashing in a one-two strobe effect were very bright and materialized into a string of lights on what was probably 4 or 5 craft. They were flying in a "follow the leader" pattern. There was no sound. Their altitude was hard to judge because of the blackness of the night and the brightness of the lights, but my guess would be under 5 thousand feet. Their path was straight out of the west, then a sharp turn to the south, then a sharp turn to continue east and out of sight. The whole passage was less than one minute. This was witnessed by two other adults on my boat I consider myself to be a qualified observer.
My background includes many years in aerospace engineering along with close work with astronaut trainees.