Phoenix Lights

Date: March 13, 1997
Location: Phoenix, Arizona
Appearance: Black triangles, V-shaped objects
Sources: Local media; MUFON; Dr. Bruce Maccabee
Summary: Multiple UFOs over Arizona. Black triangles and V-shaped objects containing lights, seen by thousands.

Thousands of witnesses throughout Arizona reported silent unidentified objects, many of them black triangles or V-shaped objects containing lights. The craft were spotted flying over Phoenix, Arizona, at Las Vegas, Nevada and at Los Angeles, California. They were photographed and videotaped by both the local media and residents. One video shows an arc of lights appearing one by one, then going out one by one. Other similar sequences show lights in a V array.

On March 13, 1997, at around 8:00 pm, people from the northwest part of Arizona started to report a formation of lights moving south toward Prescott, AZ. These lights formed a basic triangle with as many as six or seven lights per side with two red lights trailing.

As the calls kept flowing in at the UFO Reporting Center in Seattle, the description changed as to how many lights were involved. Some even said there were no lights at all, but they could see a black mass blocking out the stars as it passed between the viewer and the sky.

Some lights drifted as low as 300 m and moved far too slowly for conventional aircraft and too silently for helicopters. Many witnesses reported a mile wide V shaped craft with huge orbs. It blocked out the stars of the night sky.

Fife Symington,the governor at the time, was witness to this incident; he later called the object "otherworldly." He said: "It was certainly not high-altitude flares because flares don't fly in formation."

Actor Kurt Russell, during an interview on the BBC, said he was flying his private plane into Phoenix when he spotted the phenomenon. He reported it to the control tower at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.

A very important distinction that has been overlooked by most critics, is that there were two separate events which took place that evening. One as described above, and another at approximately 10:00 PM. Over time they have been merged into one event known simply as "The Phoenix Lights".

The Maryland National Guard said that just before 10:00 p.m. they shot off target flares for training. MUFON investigator Richard Motzer concluded in his report in May 1997: "The lights at ten o'clock were flares; the real UFO business was between eight and nine PM."