Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Jordanian sheep spontaneously combust

According to the Arab News:
Jordanian authorities were on Wednesday conducting an investigation to try to explain an unusual phenomenon whereby the heat of a plot of land rose dramatically to more than 400 degrees Celsius.

The drastic overheating occurred in an area of about 2,000 square meters in the Balqa province, about 15 km west of Amman, according to Balqa Gov. Abdul Jalil Sleimat.

“The phenomenon was discovered by accident when sheep entered the plot while grazing,” he said.

Sleimat quoted the shepherd attending the herd as saying that the sheep caught fire and “completely burned and disappeared”.

He said any material thrown into the area burned quickly and flames came out.

The authorities have deployed police in the area, which was also sealed off with phosphoric tape. The area’s people were evacuated to ensure their safety, Sleimat said.

The government has also set up an ad hoc panel involving several departments and academic institutions to study the phenomenon.

As good a reason as any to link to this:

Jordan now believes that it was from methane gas.