Washington named UFO capital of the U.S.

Posted 8/4/22

Do you want to believe? You’re in the right place.

Newly published research ranks Washington state first in number of sightings of unidentified flying objects, with more than 88 per 100,000 …

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Washington named UFO capital of the U.S.

Posted

Do you want to believe? You’re in the right place.

Newly published research ranks Washington state first in number of sightings of unidentified flying objects, with more than 88 per 100,000 residents.

The analysts obtained data of sightings from the National UFO Reporting Center, which also happens to be based in Washington, between January 2000 and December 2021.

Phoning even closer to home is Maurene Morgan, the state director for the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) who happens to live in Port Townsend. Morgan has been director since 2017.

“It’s the most fun thing I’ve ever done and I’ve done a lot of fun things in my life,” Morgan said.

Though MUFON’s data was not used to calculate the rankings, they investigate more than 200 sightings annually.

According to Morgan, approximately 20 to 30 percent of those sightings are given the disposition of “Unknown” by her team of certified UFO Field Investigators.

The process to become a certified investigator begins with a conversation with Morgan to see if potential candidates are a good fit, followed by a crash course from a manual covering astronomy, how to collect evidence, research weather patterns, and more.

After their studies, hopeful investigators must pass an exam, then a background check, and finally get placed in a mentorship program where they observe a handful of cases before taking on any of their own.

All of this training helps them as they try to decide whether the stories they receive are natural phenomenon, hoaxes, or actually unknown.

Morgan states that the number of sighting reports in Washington consistently places it in the top four or five states in the national organization. She believes that the number of sighting reports will continue to increase every year as reluctance to report UFOs lessens.

She also mentioned that Washington plays an important part in the history of UFO sightings with what is regarded as the first sighting of the modern age.

“It seems as though the started in 1945 over Hanford where they appeared over our nuclear facilities,” Morgan said.

More well-known is the 1947 sighting by businessman Kenneth Arnold who claimed to see a group of nine high-speed objects near Mount Rainier while flying his small plane. Arnold estimated the speed of the crescent-shaped objects as several thousand miles per hour and said they moved “like saucers skipping on water.”

In the newspaper report that followed, it was mistakenly stated that the objects were saucer-shaped, hence the term “flying saucer.”

One of the most interesting tales Morgan recounted hearing was in 2014 before she took over as the director. A retired military trained sharpshooter reported seeing a gray object in the sky which at first he thought might be a bird. As he looked closer, the object seemed to be quite solid and powder gray in color. Just then, a beveled slit appeared in the sky next to the object. The man reported that he could see inside the slit to the other side. The object then began to “dematerialize into sparkles” as it went through with the slit closing up behind it, Morgan said.

These days, Morgan’s data points to areas like Mount Adams and the Yakima Reservation as the hot spots in Washington for recent sightings.

Morgan is also hoping to start a UFO 101 class in Port Townsend and is currently looking for a venue while putting together a six-class syllabus.

“I want to reach out to the public so that they can come out with the same skill set [as our investigators] and don’t have to be involved in MUFON,” Morgan said.

Those wishing to report a sighting in Washington state can do so online at mufon.com, or by calling 360-670-4213, or emailing mufon.investigates@gmail.com.

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