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In Maine Capitol, Sky Is Literally Falling

Or a mysterious metal object anyway
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 16, 2022 9:15 AM CDT
Metal Object Falls From Sky, Nearly Hits Capitol Officer
The object.   (Maine Department of Public Safety)

(Newser) – A large metal object thought to have come from an airliner fell from the sky and nearly hit an officer on duty outside the Maine State House on Friday. The cylinder crashed to the ground with a loud bang just six to eight feet from Capitol Police officer Craig Donahue around 12:30pm, reports the Kennebec Journal. "He was walking back to the building and got quite a wakeup call," Capitol Police Chief Matthew Clancy tells CBS News. Two others witnessed the object, weighing six or seven pounds, slam into the ground at high speed in an area "routinely used for rallies, protests and press conferences," per CBS. None of the three witnesses were injured, according to a release from the Maine Department of Public Safety.

Officials notified the Augusta State Airport, roughly a mile away, as well as the Federal Aviation Administration, which has launched an investigation to determine where the object might have come from, per News Center Maine. It's "likely from a large airliner on an international route," according to the release. Clancy says the FAA suspects it's a sleeve from a wing flap on a large passenger jet. However, an employee at an aircraft part supplier tells the Journal he's never seen an aircraft part that looks like this object. Greg Jolda, aviation program coordinator at the University of Maine, adds the part surely would've done damage to the aircraft it supposedly came from given its size. (Read more Maine stories.)

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