The source of three unexplained lights which appeared to float in the night sky remains a mystery for the Maungatapu man who spotted them. Tony Hutchins, 62, was on his front lawn about 10.10pm on Thursday when he noticed a bright orange light directly above Fraser Cove. “I saw this orange light in the sky and I just saw it drop down then float off to the right. “Then about a minute later, another one.”
The two lights followed the same course, falling and then floating slowly in the direction of Matapihi, he said. They did not seem to be following the wind direction, which he said was coming directly toward him, so he ruled out glowing lanterns or balloons. Mr Hutchins, who used to fly mircrolight aircraft, thought the lights were moving too slow to be aircraft. Within five minutes another bright orange light appeared above Fraser Cove and began to drift right. Mr Hutchins, a decorator, took a closer look with his binoculars and realised the glowing orange light was made up of a ring of smaller lights. After the mysterious lights drifted out of his view, behind a tree, he spotted one again – and that was when it got weird, he said. Now dark, he claimed he saw a “flying saucer” shape.
“It was like what you would see in a science fiction movie, like an alien space ship … “Once it went under the moonlight, it was obviously not a balloon. It was very metallic looking.”
So maybe drones? “They were completely silent. If they were drones I would have heard them,” he said. Astronomical Society committee member David Greig often debunked strange UFO sightings, but said this case was a mystery. He too ruled out balloons, lanterns or planes, because of the objects’ speed and direction. They were also unlikely to be drones because of the distance they travelled, he said. “This is a bit of a mystery.” – By Rebecca Savory
-The Bay of Plenty Times is keen to debunk this mystery for Mr Hutchins. Do you have any ideas for an explanation? Email firstname.lastname@example.org