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Power Outages (Blackouts) and UFOs

UFO Symposium, House Committee on Science & Astronautics, July 29, 1968

original source |  fair use notice

Summary: Below is the part of the testimony by Dr. James E. McDonald before the House Committee on Science & Astronautics, July 29, 1968, on the subject of power outages and UFOs.

Below is the part of the testimony by Dr. James E. McDonald before the House Committee on Science & Astronautics, July 29, 1968:

Mr. Ryan:
Let me ask a further question: In the course of your investigation and your study of UFO sightings, have you found any cases where contemporaneously with the sighting of UFO's allegedly, there were any other events which took place, which might or might not be related to the UFO's?

Dr. McDonald.
Yes. Certainly there are many physical effects. For instance, in Mr. Pettis' district, several people found the fillings in their mouth hurting while this object was nearby, but there are many cases probably on record of car ignition failure. One famous case was at Levelland, Tex., in 1957. Ten vehicles were stopped within a short area, all independently in a 2-hour period, near Levelland, Tex. There was no lightning or thunder storm, and only a trace of rain. There is another which I don't know whether to bring to the committee's attention or not. The evidence is not as conclusive as the car stopping phenomenon, hut there are too many instances for me to ignore. UFO's have often been seen hovering near power facilities. There are a small number but still a little too many to seem pure fortuitous chance, of system outages, coincident with the UFO sighting. One of the cases was Tamaroa, Ill. Another was a case in Shelbyville, Ky., early last year.

Even the famous one, the New York blackout (Nov 9 1965), involved UFO sightings. Dr. Hynek probably would be the most appropriate man to describe the Manhattan sighting, since he interviewed several witnesses involved. I interviewed a woman in Seacliff, N.Y. She saw a disk hovering and going up and down. And then shooting away from New York just after the power failure. I went to the FPC for data, they didn't take them seriously although they had many dozens of sighting reports for that famous evening. There were reports all over New England in the midst of that blackout, and five witnesses near Syracuse, N.Y., saw a glowing object ascending within about a minute of the blackout. First they thought it was a dump burning right at the moment the lights went out. It is rather puzzling that the pulse of current that tripped the relay at the Ontario Hydro Commission plant has never been identified, but initially the tentative suspicion was centered on the Clay Substation of the Niagara Mohawk network right there in the Syracuse area, where unidentified aerial phenomenon has been seen by some of the witnesses.

This extends down to the limit of single houses losing their power when a UFO is near. The hypothesis in the case of car stopping is that there might be high magnetic fields, d.c. fields, which saturate the core and thus prevent the pulses going through the system to the other side. Just how a UFO could trigger an outage on a large power network is however not yet clear. But this is a disturbing series of coincidences that I think warrant much more attention than they have so far received.

Mr. Ryan.
As far as you know, has any agency investigated the New York blackout in relation to UFO?

Dr. McDonald.
None at all. when I spoke to the FPC people, I was dissatisfied with the amount of information I could gain. I am saying there is a puzzling and slightly disturbing coincidence here. I'm not going on record as saying, yes, these are clear-cut cause and effect relations. I'm saying it ought to be looked at. There is no one looking at this relation between UFO's and outages.

Mr. Roush:
Our time is really running short, Mr. Ryan.

Mr. Ryan:
One final question. Do you think it is imperative that the Federal Power Conmussion, or Federal Communications Commission, investigate the relation if any between the sightings and the blackout?

Dr. McDonald:
My position would call for a somewhat weaker adjective. I'd say extremely desirable.

Mr. Roush:
Thank you. Thank you, Dr. McDonald.

(Dr. McDonald's testimony is noteworthy because of its directness and force. He considers the extraterrestrial hypothesis the most likely explanation of the phenomena. On examining the best UFO evidence, it is certainly possible to rule out practically every other hypothesis, and it is on this basis that Dr. McDonald and others lean toward the theory that we are undergoing surveillance from intelligently guided craft from extraterrestrial sources.)

On Wednesday, July 15, 1998, Joel Carpenter wrote:
"In 1992 "Time" magazine published an article called "The Doomsday Blueprints," an expose of Cold War secrets. The article contained an interview with J. Leo Bourassa, an Air Force officer (I don't think they gave his rank but I would guess he was a Colonel - he supposedly delivered the news of the 1960 U-2 shootdown to Eisenhower) who was the former commander of "High Point" - a bomb shelter complex for the President and
executive branch officials. It's better known as Mt. Weather, and is located in West Virginia. The complex was built in the late 1950s. Bourassa had been the commander of the complex for its whole active lifetime - presumably until shortly before the 1992 article was written. He said that during the entire time he had been in charge of the base, he had put it on alert exactly one time. Remember what happened between around 1957 and 1992 - the Berlin crisis, the Cuban missile crisis, several mideast wars, the KAL shootdown, etc. The one single alert was called on November 9, 1965, the day of the Northeast blackout - because Bourassa thought a surgical nuclear attack was under way. I wonder if some nuclear sensors somewhere were giving false alarms, or if he just made the assumption on his own." - Joel Carpenter

Nov.65: Power failure and faulty bomb alarms.
"Special bomb alarms were installed near military facilities and near cities in U.S.A. so that news of a nuclear attack would be transmitted before the expected communication failure. The alarm circuits were set up to display a red signal at command posts the instant that the flash of a nuclear detonation reached the sensor and before the blast could put it out of action. Normally the display would show a green signal, and yellow if the sensor was not operating or was out of communication for any other reason. During the commercial power failure in NE United States in November 1965, displays from all the bomb alarms for the area should have shown yellow. In fact two of them from different cities showed red because of circuit errors. The effect was consistent with the power failure being due to nuclear weapon explosions, and the Command Center of the Office of Emergency Planning went on full alert. Apparently the military did not." (Located on the www by Joel Carpenter) Twenty Mishaps That Might Have Started Accidental Nuclear War

(This web page produced for NICAP InterLink:UFO by Francis Ridge)

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