Cuban scientists confirm meteorite made impact in Viñales

Witnesses say meteorite caused some property damage

PINAR DEL RIO, Cuba – There were two loud noises that sounded like explosions, a trail of white smoke on the sky and rocks on the ground in the western Cuban town of Viñales, according to witnesses who believe a meteorite impacted the area. 

For a moment, some feared it was a plane. The residents of a home ran out to their backyard to investigate and found black and white sparkly rocks on the floor. Cuban scientists who examined the rocks late Friday said they were without a doubt from outer space. 

Witnesses said the impact shattered windows, but no one was injured. 

Researchers suspect the witnesses are right. Before the Friday afternoon incident in Cuba, the National Weather Service in Key West announced on Twitter that they were receiving reports of a meteor that was seen in the sky across the Florida Keys and impacted Viñales, Cuba.

Several researchers reported a satellite that covers the western hemisphere detected an apparent meteor flash in the Viñales area. 

Some Cubans in Havana found irony in the report since the area's main tourist attraction is the Prehistoric Mural, which was painted on a mountain and depicts the dinosaurs that were extinct after a giant meteor struck.









Vela is reporting from Vinales, Cuba. Torres is writing from Pembroke Park, Fla.

About the Authors:

In January 2017, Hatzel Vela became the first local television journalist in the country to move to Cuba and cover the island from the inside. During his time living and working in Cuba, he covered some of the most significant stories in a post-Fidel Castro Cuba. 

The Emmy Award-winning journalist joined the Local 10 News team in 2013. She wrote for the Miami Herald for more than 9 years and won a Green Eyeshade Award.