This morning was an unprecedented event. Large numbers of Russian videos captured a meteor as it streaked through the sky. Several hundred Russians are reporting injuries due to the meteor that struck an area some 1500 kilometers from Moscow in the Chelyabinsk region. The meteor measured almost ten tons.
The event was photographed and video recorded by dozens of people either with their phones or with their dashboard mounted video cams.
To see something like that must have been a bit of a shock. As many news agencies reported, many Russians believed that Armageddon was about to begin, that it was the end of the world. Fortunately, that was not the case. However, due to the fact the meteor was traveling at speeds near 54,000 km per hour when it hit Earth’s atmosphere, and the sonic boom it created as it drew closer to the city in the Urals, there was a great deal of property damage and injuries. At last report, 950 people were injured, this from glass shattering, falling debris and so on. An example of how loud the sonic boom was, one factory in the city had its roof cave in completely from the sound made.
What was amazing about this wasn’t just the meteor itself, but how many people captured it on film. I’m sure we’ve all seen Yourube videos with Russians filming from their dashboard and seeing all sorts of incredible things. But there’s a reason for that, and it has a specific purpose.
Dash-cams in Russia exist to prevent automobile insurance fraud. That’s right. In Russia, it’s common for gangs of individuals to attempt to setup an accident, then make the “suspect” pay up on the spot, thereby never have to go through the courts. Thanks to dash-cams, this practice is dying out. Another reason why dash-cams are needed is because attempting to find witnesses to a scene of an accident is rather difficult. The “victim” is able to find a good number of “witnesses” but the “suspect” (who is in fact the real victim) can’t find anyone to back him or her up. With dash-cams, this practice has shrunk in recent years.
But thanks to a device who’s purpose was to prevent fraud, it managed to capture a once in a lifetime event.