Monday, November 30, 2015

UAP sightings - Bureau of Meteorology - 1982-2006

Hi all,


Although the majority of UAP files held by the National Archives of Australia (NAA), are sourced from the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF), there were a number of other Australian government departments which held such files. These included the former Department of Civil Aviation; the former Department of Supply and the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM).

NAA file series PP956/1, control symbol; 45/38 titled "Observations - General by outside authorities (includes UFO)." Its date range is 1972-1981.

NAA file series PP956/1 control symbol 45/38

Melbourne based researcher Paul Dean had this file digitised in 2013 and it was found,  (total 297 pages) to consist of:
1. Reports of meteorological phenomena.
2. Reports of astronomical phenomena.
3. Reports of UAP.
4. Various miscellaneous pieces of correspondence.

I prepared a summary of UAP reports on this file in a post dated 29 March 2013 The file closed with the fact that papers after 1981 were on file 45/38 part 2.

Part two

A few months ago I decided to search the NAA's database RecordSearch for part 2. Nothing was found. I therefore decided that mindful of the date; that I would submit a request under the Freedom of Information Act to the Bureau of Meteorology. This I did. Several months went by and after paying the required fee, I received a series of eight PDF files making a total of 233 pages.

What is on it?

The date range of part 2 is 1982 to 2006. It consists of:

1. Discussions with various outside bodies about weather stations, and meteorological phenomena.
2. A few UAP reports.


Image 1 is an inward telex dated 20 Sep 1982. It is a report from the Royal Flying Doctor Service at Kalgoorlie, to the BOM Perth. It reads:

"Large bright yellow light with a greenish tail descended slowly in eastern sky in a north south direction - tail appeared to be ten times the width of light. Object appeared close and very bright. Met office Kalgoorlie at 0800 WST 20/9/82. Would appreciate any ideas so base may relay some back to Warbo. Thanks.:

Image 2 is an undated letter from the Perth UFO Research group (PUFORG)  to the BOM thanking the BOM for providing weather details for a sighting at Tonebridge on 4/10/82 at 1900-1930hrs.

Images 3-10 are the PUFORG newsletter for October 1982.

Image 21 is a letter dated 27 Aug 1982 from an individual in Busselton. It reads:

"I have always wanted to see a UFO and it looks as if I may have fluffed my chances. Early Sunday morning [23 Aug] I was pulling the curtains in preparation for bed, early because I was in the full; onset of the flu and because I have my television in my room which faces north, when I saw a bright light through the louvers and the trestles of my grapevine slightly to ENE. Now a thought crossed my mind. It was rather low, about 12 degrees in the northern sky, for the Moon, as I say I was not in my right mind or I would have braved the cold to check. Until I heard the other sightings up north I had thought no more about it...."

The BOM forwarded the letter to the Perth Observatory.


Images 1-16 are the PUFORG Newsletter Vol 1 No 2. Images 18-29 are an early 1983 PUFORG

Image 31 is a letter dated 20 March 1983. It reads:

As my husband and I were driving south along the south-west highway on Friday night last we saw what we momentarily though was a falling or shooting star. We soon saw it was much too low in the sky and too close to us. While we watched there was a sudden burst of brilliant white light of a tear drop shape, followed by a trail which appeared to be smoke. The light was so brilliant  it lighted up the car and road, nullifying our headlights which were on high beam. It was then very close to the ground. This occurred at 11.15pm and between Pinjarra (?) and Carblip (?) We don't know if your department is interested in such sightings but we would..."

Images 33-46 are of the March 1983 PUFORG Newsletter.

Also on the file copies of the WAUFOIC Bulletin


Images 1-29 are of two PUFORG Newsletters Vol 1 no 3 and one other undated newsletter.

An invitation to join the WAUFOIC was on the file


Image 18 reads as follows:

"Sighting of UFO Saturday 15 June 1985. At 8am on the above date (deleted) and "deleted) reported the sighing of a UFO to the Training Officer and the weather bureau officer (deleted.) They reported that at 5am this morning they saw a UFO in the sky. It was travelling at an altitude of about 800 feet, coming from the western hills, slowly at first, and then gathering speed and disappearing over the eastern hills. The object was balloon shaped, and made no noise. Its estimated size was a diameter of about 30 feet. It had a "tail" which could have been a rudder. It was very bright and silver, strong enough to catch the eye of observers. The Sun was just rising, so some of the brightness could have been a reflection of the Sun. It had no wings. It travelled in a straight path, without departing from its course. It was observed for about 15 minutes."

Image 19 is a letter to the Manager Met Office Perth, from the Training Officer, referring on the sighting.


Image 7 is a letter dated 25 February 1986:

"I wish to report the observation of an unusual phenomenon on the night of Thursday February 20th 1986. I reside at (deleted) approximately 75 metres north-west of the water towers on the top of Ewen Street hill, one of the highest points of land in the metropolitan region and approximately 2.5 kms from the ocean at Scarborough. On the night of the 20th there was an almost complete coverage of the sky by a relatively high cloud layer of nimbo-stratus associated with cyclone Rhonda and all the stars were consequently obscured. From my side veranda I have a good ocean view, and at 11.20pm my attention was drawn by a bright light, at an elevation of about 10 degrees in the vicinity of Brighton Road, above the sea. Momentarily it appeared  to radiate light but this was  probably due to atmospherics at low altitude. The object ascended rapidly, also perpendicularly, to an altitude of probably 2 top 3 thousand feet at which height it resembled a light or orange sphere. It then moved northwards parallel to the coast just below the cloud base, to a point north of Trigg island before coming back towards the city of Perth at an elevation of about 60 degrees. Its velocity approximated that of satellites which I have observed previously.

At this point UI moved from the veranda on to the street verge, the better to observe the object, which was just below the cloud base and from time to time became hidden by wisps of cloud. It appeared to be rotating or moving erratically but not in a zig-zag fashion.

Having trained as a wireless-navigator in the RAAF in 1944 and having done courses in astro-navigation and meteorology I was of the view that the object  could have been a meteorological balloon which had broken loose from its mooring or tether. However, when the object had reached a point several miles to the north-east of Perth it again changed course by circling to the west of the City.

Its velocity increased dramatically at a point due west of the City when it moved at incredible speed faster than  any meteor/meteorite I have ever observed, before disappearing in the south-west sky while still overhead. Apart from its phenomenal speed, what intrigued me was that it travelled in straight and level flight with no apparent descent, nor did it leave any trail of light so characteristic of meteors.

From the time I first observed the object until its disappearance at 11:32pm I had it under observation for all but a few seconds for a period of some twelve minutes."

Image 11 is a letter from the BOM dated 2 Apr 1986 to the writer of the above letter. The lengthy reply included: "The direction of surface and low level winds (as well as its speed of movement) eliminates the possibility of the object being a weather balloon carried along by the wind...The fact that there were no reports of lightning or thunder during the night weighs against ball lightning...for charge separation to occur within clouds requires precipitation...Rain was not reported at Perth airport...there may have been some form of electrical discharge at the base of the clouds..."


Image 8 is a sighting report to the BOM:

An incident happened to me in 19666 whilst travelling on the (deleted) in which I encountered a lighted object in the sky; probably about 10 a.m. above me. I am trying to eliminate possibilities.

At the time I became aware of the object, I stopped the vehicle and got out to get a better look. It was stationary above me, but did not strike me as being extra-terrestrial. Indeed I had no feeling of being frightened. The object hung  above me and appeared to be a light or object the same size, colour and intensity as a car headlights, except that it seemed to be pointing upwards. There was no noise and it did not move. After some minutes I got back into the vehicle and carried on.

Later that day I heard via the radio that other sightings had been made here in this state and on the same day.

At the time I shrugged the matter being too busy to persue it although there were suggestions that the sightings could have been weather balloons. Now, I wonder..."

Image 9 is a reply from the BOM:

The BOM doesn't usually comment on extra-terrestrial matters
"Many thanks for your letter outlining your experience on the Roy Hill -Wittenoom Road in 1966. Generally the Bureau of Meteorology does not get involved in the extra-terrestrial, but as you relate the experience to that of a weather balloon, I will try to describe the equipment we used back in those days...the nearest weather station releasing them being Port Hedland some 215 kilometres to the North...As to records kept of possible UFO sightings back in those days, unfortunately I am unable to locate any mention of such things which is probably due to it not really our field of expertise...can not think of any meteorological phenomenon that might explain your sighting..."

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