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The 1954 French flap:

The index page for the 1954 French flap section of this website is here.

September 10, 1954, Bruay-Thiers, Nord:

Reference number for this case: 10-Sep-54-Bruay-Thiers. Thank you for including this reference number in any correspondence with me regarding this case.


From the 1966 edition on, of his book "Mysterieux Objets Célestes", the pioneer of French ufology Aimé Michel added in a footnote that many witnesses made themselves known when the Marius Dewilde case of September 10, 1954, in the Nord, had ceased to be discussed, in the years following 1954.

Among these, he said, a Mr. Bernard Petitjean, of Valenciennes, had reported that he was in Bruay-Thiers, two kilometers from Vicq, driving in the company of three peeple.

"The object appeared to them at the very moment when they were getting out of their car," said Michel, "It was yellow then." It seemed to stop for a moment at the vertical of Bruay-Thiers, then leave at a vertiginous speed."

The author Roger-Luc Mary indicated in 1980 that this observation took place at a little after 10 p.m., between Fresnes-sur-Escaut and Bruay-sur-Escaut, six kilometers from Quarouble, and that Mr. Bernard Petitjean, residing in Valenciennes, drove in the company of Dr. Hu.


[Ref. aml1:] AIME MICHEL:

Aimé Michel notes that many witnesses came forward when the Marius Dewilde case of September 10, 1954, in the area was not being talked of anymore in the years following 1954.

He notes that Mr. Bernard Petitjean, of Valenciennes, reported that he was in Bruay-Thiers, two kilometers away from Vicq, driving a car, with three other people.

"The object appeared to them at the very moment when they got out of their car", indicates Michel, "it was then of yellow color. It seemed to them to stop one moment at the vertical of Bruay-Thiers, then to set out again at a vertiginous speed."

[*] Note: the full name appears only in the Planète edition of 1966; in the next reprints, the name is only "B. P."

[Ref. rmy1:] ROGER-LUC MARY:

Chronology of the events that occurred in France, in Quarouble and its area, on September 10, 1954

[... other cases ...]

5th testimony, a bit more than 10 p.m.. Between Fresnes-sur-Escaut and Bruay-sur-Escaut, department of the Nord, at six kilometers from Quarouble, Mr. Bernard Petitjean, Valenciennes resident, was driving by car with Dr Hu.


This ufologist indicates that on September 10, 1954, at approximately 10:00 p.m. in Bruay-Thiers in North, according to the book M.O.C. by Aimé Michel on page 63, Mr. Petitjean was driving a car in company of three other people, when an object of yellow color appeared to them at the very moment when they got out of the car. It seemed to them that it stopped one moment at the vertical of Bruay-Thiers, then is set out again at a vertiginous speed.

The source is indicated as "Book M.O.C. by Aimé Michel page 63".



"Skeptical" ufologist Dominique Caudron, who is from the North of France, explains in one of his web pages that according to him, Marius Dewilde invented his encounter starting from his observation of what would have really been a meteor. Here is what he said about the case in Vicq:

Witnesses describe a bolide

[Photo: the caption is "a witness of Vicq" and the file name is "Ravet".]

But if it was a bolide, other witnesses would probably have seen it too. Indeed other witnesses have also seen it, with their own eyes.

They were, first of all, inhabitants of the neighboring communes of Quarouble, convinced that they had seen the craft which had risen from Quarouble:

At Onnaing Mr. Edouard Auverlot and Mr. Hublart saw a light in the sky pass at the time indicated by Dewilde.

At Vicq, three young men, including Augustin Ravet, saw the passage of a very brilliant object coming from the direction of Quarouble. This does not mean that it appeared in the direction of Quarouble but that it seemed to be following an East-West trajectory.

And according to Nord-Eclair: "More than ten people said they saw, that evening, at around 10:30 p.m., a "fireball", a "disc with a trail of fire" in the sky. Testimonies agree that the craft was heading for Anzin."

Other local testimonies are mentioned twelve years later by Aimé Michel, in Bruay-Thiers, and Valencienne La Briquette. Another, even later, testimony is about an observation at the Vicq pumping station. These observations are not useful, not only because of the delay, but also because certain details (mysterious breakdown) seem imported from ufological mythology.


Totally insuffucient information.

"Bruay-Thiers" does not exist as such. There is Bruay-sur-l'Escaut, in the Nord department, and "Thiers", a location or hamlet, at 50° 24' 27.0" North, 3° 33' 11.6" East, included in Bruay-sur-Escaut, about 2 km from the city center of Bruay-sur-l'Escaut.


(These keywords are only to help queries and are not implying anything.)

Bruay-Thiers, Nord, object, car, yellow, fast, stop, Bernard Petitjean


[----] indicates sources which I have not yet checked.

Document history:

Version: Created/Changed by: Date: Change Description:
1.0 Patrick Gross December 14, 2007 First published.
1.1 Patrick Gross October 11, 2014 Addition [rmy1].
1.2 Patrick Gross January 28, 2017. Additions [dcn1].
1.3 Patrick Gross June 31, 2019. Addition of the Summary. Explanations changed, were "Not looked for yet."

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This page was last updated on June 31, 2019.