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The 1954 French flap:

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

Explanation of the columns in the cases tables:

The "Date" column:

Indicates the most probable date or the best known date for the observation.

The "City/place, department" column:

Indicates the commune or city nearest to the place of observation, and the department.

Note: some well-known cases are "traditionally" associated with a place which is not a commune or city but a location; some well-known cases are associated with a commune which is not really the nearest to the place of observation. In such cases, I sometimes preserve the place given traditionally in the ufological literature with an aim of facilitating the search for a case to my readers.

The "Hour" column:

There are, expectedly, only a negligible minority of cases if the French 1954 flap comprising a reliable indication of the hour. Hours for examples are frequently noted as "15:30", "22:00", "04:30", the "rounded" minutes suggest obviously that these are approximate hours.

The hours given by an interval, "between xx:xx and yy:yy", are noted xx:xx/yy:yy. A tilde (~) marks hours explicitly given as approximate. "Night," "Day", "Evening", are indicated when the acceptable sources do not give an hour but specify at least that.

Some late sources, particularlly on the Internet, just invent hours; thus a case whose contemporary sources, a newspaper for example, indicate that it occurred "early the morning", are granted by certains a "precise" hour like "06:00". I obviously do not care for such invented hours.

The only goals of the "hour" column in the cases tables are to allow me an easy way to sort the cases chronologically, and to facilite time countings (counting nocturnal, daylight case, etc).

The "W"column:

Displays information about the number of witnesses when possible and/or their anonymous or named nature:

The only goals of this column are to facilitate calculations of the cases relative to the number of witnesses, and to propose lists of case by witness number, and their anonymous or named nature.

The "CL" column:

Note: The Hynek classification does not comprise same the categories exactly, their definitions are not exactly the same ones, and according to its author's terms, it does not apply simply to UFO sightings, but only to those of them for which a search, an an investigation, really showed that the cause of the report is nothing commonplace. Thus, for Hynek, a "CE3" story which proves to be a hoax or a confusion should not be classified "CE3", while in my classification for the French reports of 1954, I classify it a CE3. Of course the commonplace explanation of such a case is then noted next to the case.

Some cases suffer such a lack of information that they cannot be classified. For example, a case can mention the observation of a phenomenon without specifying if the observation was by day or night, and it is consequently not possible to classify it as "NL, Nocturnal Light" or "DD, Daylight Disc". The cell is then left empty.

The "JV" column:

En 1990, dans son livre "Confrontations", Jacques Vallée a proposé un nouveau système de classification, voulu complet que la classification Hynek, tout en la prenant en compte. Par ailleurs, ce nouveau système est sensé permettre de classer non seulement les "OVNIS", mais aussi les "phénomènes paranormaux":

Anomaly (AN)

Fly by (FB)

Manoeuvers (MA)

Close Encounter (CE)

Some cases suffer a lack of information such as they cannot be classified. For example, a case can mention an observation without indicating if there was a discontinuous or continuous trajectory, and it is consequently not possible to choose between a "FB1" or "MA1" classification. The box is then left empty. Also, some categories overlap, some case can well be called "CE3" just as well as "MA3" for example.

The fact that I display cases Vallée classifications does not mean I endorse this classification.

The "T" column

This classification is not the "PAN A,B,C ou D" of the GEPAN/SEPRA/GEIPAN, although its function is obviously similar.

The "Ex"column:

For the cases for which the category "T" is A or B, the proven explanation or the most plausible explanation of these cases is noted. The indication of possible or plausible but not proven explanations is followed of a question mark.

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This page was last updated on March 23, 2010