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Tucson (UPI) Dec 11, 2013
A loud boom and a bright streak in the sky over Tucson, Ariz., Tuesday evening may have been a preview of the year's largest meteor shower, astronomers said.
The spectacular annual Geminid meteor shower officially starts Thursday but the Tuesday incident in Arizona had eyewitnesses across the state calling police station and local news outlets, CNN reported.
The explosion shook Tucson resident's Tony Kubrak's house, and he dashed outside to have a look.
"I see this tremendous, white, bright light in the western sky. And it was just ... it was absolutely enormous, I couldn't believe it," he told KGUN9-TV, Tucson.
The Geminid shower will be visible around the world until at least Monday, scientists said, with the best viewing between 11 p.m. and 3 a.m.
"Of all the debris streams Earth passes through every year, the Geminids are by far the most massive," NASA astronomer Bill Cooke said. "When we add up the amount of dust in the Geminid stream, it outweighs other streams by factors of 5 to 500."
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