Some 160 UFO sightings were reported in Washington state last year - about one every 55 hours on average, according to the National UFO Reporting Center.
The center, based in Davenport, Wash., receives UFO reports from all around the world, but says it makes no claims as to the validity of the information in any of these reports.
“Obvious hoaxes have been omitted, however most reports have been posted exactly as received in the author’s own words,” the center says. “We hope that this information will prove to be useful to the general public and the UFO community at large.”
The center reports that Washington state has the third-highest number of total sightings in its database, behind California (No. 1) and Florida (No. 2).
The reports from the Evergreen State are diverse. Many described triangular- or cigar-shaped objects, spheres, lights, disks, fireballs and even formations of multiple objects.
The reports came from all over the state at all times of the day and night. Some sightings lasted only two or three seconds while others continued for several minutes or, in rare cases, an hour or more.
- Oct. 24 sighting by a former pilot in University Place: “Object was spherical in shape and emitted a brilliant, extremely coherent orange glow. … The object made zero noise. As it approached my direction it just skimmed the bottom of the cloud layers, moving through cloud material and lighting it up with the same orange color it was emitting. It sped up and slowed down erratically and quickly, moving very much as a living creature would as apposed to human aircraft or drone would. … It was quite strange.”
- Dec. 7 sighting in Issaquah: “I was at a gas station taking my dog for a walk. At approx. 18:20 I saw a starfish-shaped object floating and changing shape. It was covered in small bright red colored lights. Floating quickly. It was visible for 11 seconds and quickly disappeared. It made no noise.”
- June 24 sighting from a passenger in a Boeing 737 near Mount St. Helens: “Altitude 23,000 ft, heading 295 degrees mag, craft descended out of clouds off left wing tip. Closed to 5 miles or so out. Held formation for appx 30 to 45 seconds then ascended at almost nose up 45 degrees into clouds in what seemed instantly. Time 8:15 Seattle time. Just east of volcano on horizon. (The report notes that the witness is a pilot and experienced aircraft mechanic of “unimpeachable integrity.”)
- May 26 sighting in Auburn: “Last night on an evening bike ride with my fiance, we saw objects steadily heading up into the sky. I counted 8 in all. We saw a helicopter approaching than turn away. Others on social media heard helicopters over Auburn for 3 plus hours around the same time, no one found out why.”
- April 2 sighting in Kittitas: “I was outside smoking, when I noticed flashing in the distance. Grabbed my cell phone to zoom in on object. I started recording the object. It would move in a circular motion. Flash red, blue, white, green. Resembled a fireball of energy bursting repeatedly. Move across the sky in a unpredictable manner. I was terrified.”
- Feb, 23 sighting in Wenatchee: “I noticed … 3 lights forming a massive triangle these were moving fairly slow but perfectly in unison with each other, then right next to it there was another one and behind it another one, there were about 5 to 6 giant triangles that I saw all moving together. … I ran inside and grabbed my camera and tried to get a picture of the formation but could only get 2 lights in the pictures I took.”
- Jan. 25 sighting reportedly seen by multiple witnesses in Yakima: “Three of us watched these Lights blink off and on as they did not move (in a clear sky). Then suddenly three smaller craft arrived. They showed up out of nowhere! Two moved slow to the right and one began to climb at an incredible rate higher then the other objects and it was very bright. As we watch this the largest object began to turn … and I can see that it’s disk-shaped, and it’s huge! Then suddenly the area it was in seemed to magically have a cloud for it to vanish behind..it was as if it made it’s own camo, and it was gone (for 13 minutes) … and now it’s back!!!!
The National UFO Reporting Center said it has recently seen a high volume of prank calls on its hotline, “typically dozens per day we suspect that the same problem may spill over to the stream of incoming written reports.”
However, it said, “there are, nevertheless, many excellent reports, submitted by anonymous parties, that deserve a reader’s attention, so an anonymous report is not necessarily unreliable.”