Authorities are investigating the source of a bright flash in the sky, loud boom and what shook residences and businesses about 11:40 p.m. Monday in northwest Louisiana, first reported as an explosion at Barskdale Air Force Base.
"Felt the boom at 11:30 but also were driving west on I20 in Shreveport at 10:30 when my husband and I both saw a greenish glow streaking rather low and shakily across the sky with sparks behind it. Angle was from the NW. Couldn't estimate distance," wrote Laura Kester Moehring on KTBS Facebook.
The National Weather Service reports, "Webster Parish Explosion caused by Explosion of Old Munitions at Camp Minden last night." It states:
Monday night at around 11:26 pm, a large explosion occurred to the southwest of Dixie Inn, in Webster Parish, approximatey (sic) 4 miles southwest of Minden, or 28 miles east of Shreveport. The initial event occurred at Latitude/Longitude 35.578 N, -93.351 W which is in the borders of the Camp Minden Army ammunition plant. A large flash was observed, citizens were shaken out of bed and windows were shattered during the late night hours October 15th.
The Webster sheriff's office is now entertaining the possibility that the "source of the explosion might have been a meteorite, possibly in the Dixie Inn area," according to Shreveport Times.
"There have been a large number of reports stating that they saw something come down instead of something blow up," a spokesman said.
"I was out with my little dog last night and I saw a huge ball of fire fall to the earth from the sky east/southeast of my home," reported Karen Rust. "I was very big and very bright.It had a tail on it so I assumed it was a meteror.I went in and posted it on Facebook so when i told someone about it they wouldn't think I was crazy."
"So what about the boom that happened around 7:30 last night? Everyone in stonewall heard it," reported Alan Leach on Facebook.
A meteorite incident investigation would fall to NASA and the Air Force.
A spokeswoman for Barksdale Air Force Base public affairs said that the base is investigating and that whatever the source, it didn't originate at the base.
Sheriff Gary Sexton says Webster authorities still don't know what it was or where it hit.
"Thermal-imaging cameras showed nothing off Elmo Burton Loop near Dixie Inn, but helicopters are expected to be in the air this morning to survey the area along U.S. 80 and Interstate 20 for the cause of what caused the ground to shake," according to Shreveport Times.
"Sexton earlier said he was driving in the Springhill-Cullen area when he saw two flashes from the south. One report says it shook the Webster Courthouse in Minden.
A resident of the Lake Bistineau area reports that it almost shook their house off its foundation.
The National Weather Service office in Shreveport is receiving reports of a loud boom, shaking, rattling and possible damage, including broken windows, west and northwest of Minden.
"I don't have any idea what it was," said Mark Murphy at the weather service. "A lot of calls have mentioned all kinds of scenarios, but I don't know for sure anything."
"I live in Stonewall also, and I didn't hear it. But those of us in Stonewall that heard and were shook by a large explosion a few months ago still want to know what caused it," commented Jene Jefferson on KTBS' Facebook page. "A whole lot of fishy somethings going on. So do we have some contained bunkers in Stonewall exploding?"
"Now they are saying it was an explosion in minden.... why would it move on radar if it was an explosion?" asks Edie Turner.
Karen Rust reported on Facebook, "I saw a meteror at about 11:pm last night.from my front yard in Avery Tx. It was big and had a tail behind it. I posted it on facebook at that time so people would beleive me when I said I saw it. It was in the eastern sky."