Space assaults: how common are they? - KATV - Breaking News, Weather and Razorback Sports

Space Assaults: how common are they?

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Described as a once-in-a-lifetime event, a meteorite that leaves more than 1,000 injured in Russia today has us all wondering just how common are these space assaults. One local expert says it happens more often than we think.

"I thought it was pretty crazy and definitely bad luck," said Dylen Cardwell.

The news of a 10-ton meteorite exploding over Russia's Ural mountain earlier today spread like wildfire across the world. Some took it with a grain of salt.

"As far as I'm concerned, there's stuff in space junk going around all the time," said Keith Quintavalle

Others, not so much.

"If it's happening there it could happen here," said Emily Reagan.

A University of Arkansas at Little Rock professor says the chances of a meteorite that large crashing into a densely populated area again is highly unlikely.

"Something of this magnitude probably happens every five to ten years," said Dr. Tony Hall, a Professor in the Astrology and Physics Department at UALR.

But that doesn't mean there's no activity in between those periods

"Seventy percent of the surface of the earth is covered with water," said Dr. Hall. "Seventy percent of the time we don't even know it happens," he said.

Today's meteorite crashed into a city with a population of over one million, that's what makes the event so unique.

"This was an event that released the energy comparable to a Hiroshima-type bomb," said Dr. Hall.

Hall says everyday around 1,000 tons of space junk crashes into earth, that's about 500 cars. But with more metropolitan areas developing, those hundreds of tons are more likely to fall on residential areas.

"As the earth becomes more populated and such we could expect more casualties," said Dr. Hall. "But these are very rare events," he said.

The odds are concerning for some but there's always those that believe there's nothing to worry about, at least not for now.

"In maybe another fifty years or something," said

There was a lot of talk about an asteroid that came extremely close to earth earlier today and that one was about 1,000 times larger than this one. They were not related though.