The Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) has opened an investigation into multiple reports of one or more fast-moving, unidentified objects seen flying off the coast of Ireland last Friday. The unusual object was first reported to air traffic control by a British Airways pilot flying off the south-western coast of Ireland, with other pilots soon following suit.

The first pilot can be heard asking if there was any military activity in the area, with air traffic controllers responding in the negative. At that point, the pilot explains that she’d just seen something that was moving “so fast.”

“It came up on our left-hand side, rapidly veered to the north, we saw a bright light and it just disappeared at a very high speed … we were just wondering. We didn’t think it was a likely collision course … just wondering what it could be,” she told controllers out of Shannon. Almost immediately, another pilot chimes in.

“Meteor or some other object making some kind of re-entry,” the other pilot offered. “It appeared to be multiple objects following the same sort of trajectory… very bright from where we were.”

Then another pilot’s voice comes over the radio: “We also saw that in our 11 o’clock position,” the new pilot reported, “I saw two bright lights at 11 o’clock that seemed to um… back over to the right and then climb away at a speed.” Another pilot estimated the speed of the object’s climb to be “absolutely astronomical, like Mach 2 or something.”

Air traffic controllers confirmed that the object or objects were not showing on their radar.

There are a number of possible explanations for the unusual lights these pilots witnessed in the skies off of Ireland’s southern coast, with meteorites entering into the atmosphere being offered by most as the most likely among them. That explanation, however, has done little to deter UFO investigators, who point out that meteorites don’t climb as these objects were reported to be doing. Meteorites, or “shooting stars,” are also quite common — making it unlikely that two shooting stars in the skies over the Atlantic would draw so much attention from so many professional aviators.

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Another, perhaps even more likely, explanation could be a classified military aircraft. One pilot estimated the object’s speed as Mach 2, or about 1,500 miles per hour and around three times the speed of a commercial airliner. That certainly is fast, but there are a number of military aircraft capable of achieving that speed. The F-22 Raptor, for instance, would also not show up on air traffic control’s radar and could sustain those high speeds. However, there are currently no F-22s deployed to Europe.

For now, at least, the Irish government is remaining tight-lipped about the incident — though they did formally acknowledge that an investigation is underway.

“Following reports from a small number of aircraft on Friday 9th November of unusual air activity the IAA has filed a report. This report will be investigated under the normal confidential occurrence investigation process.” The IAA said.

 

Listen to the pilots reporting the unidentified object below:

 

Image courtesy of WikiMedia Commons