Meteor would cause 'significant fatalities' if it hit Earth

A similar-sized meteor to the one that exploded in the sky over Russia would cause "significant fatalities" if it hit Earth.

But the 10-ton meteor was "very small" comparatively and objects of that size rarely penetrate the Earth's atmosphere, according to Hugh Lewis of the University of Southampton.

Experts said the meteor appeared to be unconnected to an asteroid predicted to narrowly miss the Earth tonight.

The asteroid, named 2012 DA14, is big enough to flatten London and could come as close as 17,200 miles.

Advertisement

Meteor clean-up operation

Russian authorities have reportedly sent a 20,000-strong team to the Ural Mountains to help with the rescue and clean-up operation after a meteor struck the area.