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The 1954 French flap:

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

October 9, 1954, Cuisy, Seine-et-Marne:

Reference number for this case: 9-Oct-54-Cuisy. Thank you for including this reference number in any correspondence with me regarding this case.

Summary:

Aimé Michel reports in his 1958 book about the 1954 French flap the experience of two witnesses, both craftsman in mechanics, Mssr. André Bartoli, of Paris, and Jean-Jacques Lalevée, of Cuisy in the Seine-and-Marne.

He indicates that on Saturday, October 9, 1954, Mr. Bartoli took his car and left for Cuisy to visit his friend Mr. Lalevée. At 09:20 P.M., whereas he operated to take again the direction of Paris while driving in rear gear at high speed, the motor car being accelerated, he saw through the window pane that the sky was largely lit by a strong orange yellow gleam. At the same time, the engine stalled and this slowed the car down which, its propulsion being stopped, stopped on the spot.

Aimé Michel indicates that Mr. Bartoli told him:

"At this time, I did not think about the car: intrigued by the light, I opened the door in haste and went out to see what it was. I just had the time to see the phenomenon disappearing in the direction of Paris, towards the south-west."

"It was a sort of orange yellow cigar, of a width equal to half of the diameter of the moon approximately. Mr. Lalevée, who was within ten meters behind the car, dropped his bicycle, and managed to distinguish it very clearly whereas it passed overhead, coming from the direction of Saint-Soupplets. We discussed it a few minutes, asking ourselves what it was. Perhaps a very large low flying meteor? Anyways, it had disappeared."

"I thus returned near to my car, and at this point in time I noted that the headlights were extinct: all concerned by the passage of the phenomenon, we had not noticed that. Intrigued, I leaned towards the dashboard: the contact was on. And the speedbox lever was still on the reverse gear, the engine being consequently coupled."

Aimé Michel tried to offer an explanation to Mr. Bartoli during their discussion. He asked whether, under the amazement, Mr. Bartoli may not have released the pedals without realizing it, making the engine stall, then may have come out of the car without thinking that he neither disconnected the engine nor cut the power.

Mr. Bartoli answered:

"Sir, I could answer you that I am a professional mechanic, that in what you tell me there are two or three things that a professional mechanic would never do, and that I am not used to release the pedals for a gleam in the sky, even unusual. But all that, it is psychological arguments that you are not obliged to believe. I will thus ask you a question: how does your theory explain that, the power contact being on, the headlights were extinct?"

Michel then suggests that he perhaps automatically turned them off while coming out for better seeing the gleam.

Mr. Bartoli answered:

"That is what I initially believed: but by wanting to actuate the "commodo" I realized that it was indeed in the "headlights on" position. It was in this position, the contact put on, and the extinct headlights. That is what we both saw, and which two mechanics never saw in their life on a car in operational condition."

Michel asks him what he then did.

"I disconnected the engine, I actuated the starter, the engine restarted and the headlights gave again their light normally. I would be very curious that you explain me all that."

The dialogue finishes as follows:

"- If you would tell your story to the newspapers, they would say that a flying saucer flew over your car and made your engine stall when passing by."

"- To believe in flying saucers, I wait to have seen one of them."

"- And, according to you, what was it that you saw?"

"- I do not know."

Michel indicates that the trajectory indicated by the witnesses for the object implied that it would have crossed National Road RN 2 little later, one of the most busy road in France, and that the incident having occurred on a Saturday evening at a time when thousands of Parisians left for the weekend. Moreover the indicated trajectory continued above Paris where tens of thousands of cars are driving. He thus wonders if it were conceivable that only Mr. Bartoli's car could have been stopped.

He also wondered if the flightpath of such a luminous object could be unperceived, and indicated that during the months following this observation, four testimonies still reached him which could partly answer these questions.

He indicated that the object had indeed crossed Route Nationale 2, stopping several cars and causing a notable commotion, that this object, or another similar object, had been seen by witnesses driving by car in the south of Orly, but without causing incidents, that a motorist had observed it more in the west, on the road to Chartres, where it had seemed to go more slowly and where no car was stopped.

Reports:

[Ref. aml1:] AIME MICHEL:

Aimé Michel reports in his book the experience of two witnesses, both craftsman in mechanics, Mssr. André Bartoli, of Paris, and Jean-Jacques Lalevée, of Cuisy in the Seine-and-Marne.

He indicates that on Saturday, October 9, 1954, Mr. Bartoli took his car and left for Cuisy to visit his friend Mr. Lalevée. At 09:20 P.M., whereas he operated to take again the direction of Paris while driving in rear gear at high speed, the motor car being accelerated, he saw through the window pane that the sky was largely lit by a strong orange yellow gleam. At the same time, the engine stalled and this slowed the car down which, its propulsion being stopped, stopped on the spot.

Aimé Michel indicates that Mr. Bartoli told him:

"At this time, I did not think about the car: intrigued by the light, I opened the door in haste and went out to see what it was. I just had the time to see the phenomenon disappearing in the direction of Paris, towards the south-west."

"It was a sort of orange yellow cigar, of a width equal to half of the diameter of the moon approximately. Mr. Lalevée, who was within ten meters behind the car, dropped his bicycle, and managed to distinguish it very clearly whereas it passed overhead, coming from the direction of Saint-Soupplets. We discussed it a few minutes, asking ourselves what it was. Perhaps a very large low flying meteor? Anyways, it had disappeared."

"I thus returned near to my car, and at this point in time I noted that the headlights were extinct: all concerned by the passage of the phenomenon, we hadd not noticed that. Intrigued, I leaned towards the dashboard: the contact was on. And the speedbox lever was still on the reverse gear, the engine being consequently coupled."

Aimé Michel tried to offer an explanation to Mr. Bartoli during their discussion. He asked whether, under the amazement, Mr. Bartoli may not have released the pedals without realizing it, making the engine stall, then may have come out of the car without thinking that he neither disconnected the engine nor cut the power.

Mr. Bartoli answered:

"Sir, I could answer you that I am a professional mechanic, that in what you tell me there are two or three things that a professional mechanic would never do, and that I am not used to release the pedals for a gleam in the sky, even unusual. But all that, it is psychological arguments that you are not obliged to believe. I will thus ask you a question: how does your theory explain that, the power contact being on, the headlights were extinct?"

Michel then suggests that he perhaps automatically turned them off while coming out for better seeing the gleam.

Mr. Bartoli answered:

"That is what I initially believed: but by wanting to actuate the "commodo" I realized that it was indeed in the "headlights on" position. It was in this position, the contact put on, and the extinct headlights. That is what we both saw, and which two mechanics never saw in their life on a car in operational condition."

Michel asks him what he then did.

"I disconnected the engine, I actuated the starter, the engine restarted and the headlights gave again their light normally. I would be very curious that you explain me all that."

The dialogue finishes as follows:

"- If you would tell your story to the newspapers, they would say that a flying saucer flew over your car and made your engine stall when passing by."

"- To believe in flying saucers, I wait to have seen one of them."

"- And, according to you, what was it that you saw?"

"- I do not know."

Michel indicates that the trajectory indicated by the witnesses for the object implied that it would have crossed National Road RN 2 little later, one of the most busy road in France, and that the incident having occurred on a Saturday evening at a time when thousands of Parisians left for the weekend. Moreover the indicated trajectory continued above Paris where tens of thousands of cars are driving. He thus wonders if it were conceivable that only Mr. Bartoli's car could have been stopped.

He also wondered if the flightpath of such a luminous object could be unperceived, and indicated that during the months following this observation, four testimonies still reached him which could partly answer these questions.

He indicated that the object had indeed crossed Route Nationale 2, stopping several cars and causing a notable commotion, that this object, or another similar object, had been seen by witnesses driving by car in the south of Orly, but without causing incidents, that a motorist had observed it more in the west, on the road to Chartres, where it had seemed to go more slowly and where no car was stopped.

[Ref. mcs1:] MICHEL CARROUGES:

Michel Carrouges notes the case in his chapter on physical effects caused by flying saucers.

He refers the reader to Aimé Michel's book for details.

[Ref. rhl1:] NICAP:

The 1964 NICAP book listed that on October 9, 1954 in Cuisy, the Seine-Et-Marne, France, a car's motor and headlights failed as cigar-shaped UFO passed above.

[Ref. ask1:] A. SCHOPICK:

Scan.

Two days later, Saturday, Oct. 9, another E-M incident occurred. Mr. Andre Bartoli of Pari [sic] had been visiting his friend, Mr. Jean Jacques Lalevee of Cuisy, Seine-et-Marne. At 9:20 in the evening, As Mr. Bartoli was turning h·is car around to return to Paris, he saw through his windshield that the sky was lit up by a yellow-orange glow, At this point the car motor failed.

2 Ibid, p. 143

Note: Ibid refers to Aimé Michel's 1958 book, Enflish version.

[Ref. ufa1:] UFOLOGY BULLETIN "UFOLOGIA":

Scan.

October 09, 1954 SEINE-ET-MARNE:

The car of two mechanics is overflown by a yellow cigar-shaped craft: engine off, headlights off.

(réf . Aimé MICHEL - "MOC")

[Ref. bbr1:] GERARD BARTHEL AND JACQUES BRUCKER:

The two authors produce the following text as coming from the book by Aimé Michel "A propos des soucoupes volantes", original title of "Mystérieux objets célestes", relating to an incident which occurred in Cuisy in the Seine-and-Marne on October 9, 1954, at approximately 09:30 p.m.:

"Mr. Bartoli took his car and went to Cuisy to visit his friend Mr. Lalevée. He was maneuvering to take again the direction of Paris at 09:20 p.m. and was driving backwards at high speed with a fully the accelerated engine, when he saw through the window pane that the sky was largely lit by a strong orange yellow gleam. At the same time the engine stalled and slowed down the car, which, propulsion cut, stopped short."

"At the time, tells Mr. Bartoli, I did not think of the car, intrigued by the light, I opened the door in haste and went outside to see what it was. I just had the time to see the phenomenon disappearing in the direction to Paris, towards the south-west, it was a sort of orange yellow cigar, of a width equal to half of the diameter of the moon approximately."

"Mr. Lalevée, who was within ten meters behind the car against his bicycle, had been able to distinguish it very clearly whereas it passed above us. We discussed it a few minutes. I returned near my car and noted that the headlights were extinct (the contact was not off)."

The two authors say that the description of the observation, "in addition to the term cigar, and some reserves on the dimension, is relatively faithful to reality". They say that Mr. Bartoli remembers the observation perfectly, but cannot allot the stop of his car to a direct incidence with what he observed, because he had been surprized by the phenomenon and, moreover, was driving in reverse gear. He allots the stall to a wrong manoeuver of his own.

The two authors say that in regard to the headlights, "their operation was useless in this sense" and that Mr. Bartoli does not remember if they were lit or extinguished before the incident.

[Ref. mrr1:] MARK RODEGHIER:

Scan.

Oct. 9, 1954

2120

FRANCE, Cuisy, Seine-et-Marne: As Andre Bartoli was turning his car around when leaving his friend's home, he saw an orange yellow glow in the sky. His car 1 s motor failed at that point. He jumped out to see a cigar-shaped UFO, half the diameter of the moon, traveling in a straight line southwest. His friend also saw the object, which was also colored orange-yellow. Mr. Bartoli then found that his headlights had gone out. Curiously, the speedometer needle still pointed to the position it occupied when the UFO was seen, not at zero. (Michel)

[Ref. lgs1] LOREN GROSS:

October 9th. Cuisy, France. (7:20 p.m.)

Cars stopped.

A fascinating account came from Cuisy, France, the evening of the 9th concerning unexplained engine failure and UFOs. In this case, the victims of the annoying experience were two auto mechanics, M. Andre Bartoli and M. Jean-Jacques Lalevee.

It seems M. Bartoli was just leaving M. Lalevee's house in his car and was backing up when, through the rear window, he saw a yellow-orange flying cigar in the twilight. Since his engine suddenly quit at the same time, M. Bartoli popped open the car door and jumped out to get a better look at the funny object passing overhead. The thing quickly sped out of sight in the direction of Paris to the southwest.

M. Lalevee, who was standing nearby to see his friend off, had also spotted the UFO. Both men exchanged opinions about the phenomenon, speculating that they just witnessed a meteor crossing the heavens at a very low altitude.

With the sky show over, M. Bartoli returned to his car and noticed, much to his puzzlement, that the headlights were out, and the motor in gear but not running.

Aime Michel investigates.

UFO investigator Aime Michel somehow heard of the incident and paid a vist to the men. Michel suggested to M. Bartoli that the shock of see ing the UFO made him yank his foot off the accelerator stalling the engine, but the professional auto mechanic denied he would do such a thing for a mere light in the sky, besides the car's ignition was on and the headlights out, indicating something very strange had occurred.

Whatever had happened, they was no permanent harm done. M. Bartoli said he restarted the car's engine without difficulty and the headlights went on normally.

The two mechanics wanted Michel to give his judgement on the case but the French UFO researcher replied: "If you report this to the papers,

[Ref. lhh1:] LARRY HATCH - "*U* COMPUTER DATABASE":

4036: 1954/10/09 21:20 1 2:41:00 E 49:04:00 N 3333 WEU FRN S&M 8:9

CUISY=DAMMARTIN-en-GOELE,FR:ORG GLOW:CAR ENG.+LITES EME:CGR:MECHANIC:SEE REF.

Ref# 79 RODEGHIER,Mark:UFO RPTS/VEHICLE INTF Page No. 2 : ROAD+RAILS

[Ref. mcn1:] MARK CASHMAN:

FRANCE, Cuisy, Seine-et-Marne

10/9/1954 21:20

As Andre Bartoli was turning his car around when leaving his friend's home, he saw an orange-yellow glow in the sky. His car's motor failed at that point. He jumped out to see a cigar-shaped UFO, half the diameter of the moon, traveling in a straight line southwest. His friend also saw the object, which was also colored orange-yellow. Mr. Bartoli then found that his headlights had gone out. Curiously, the speedometer needle still pointed to the position it occupied when the UFO was seen, not at zero.

[Ref. lcn1:] LUC CHASTAN:

Luc Chastan indicates in his database that in the Seine and Marne in Cuisy on October 9, 1954, at 21:20 hours, "A witnesses took his car and left for Cuisy to visit a friend. At 21:20, whereas he maneuvered to take again the direction of Paris while moving back at high speed, the engine accelerated thoroughly, he saw through the pane the sky largely lit by a strong orange yellow gleam, which came from the direction of Saint-Soupplets. At the same time, the engine stalled and slowed down the car which, its course being stopped, halted on the spot. The latter tells his experience like this:"

"'At the time, I did not think of the car, intrigued by the light, I opened the door in haste and went out to see what it was. I had just the time to see the phenomenon disappearing in the direction of Paris, towards the south-west. It was a kind of orange yellow cigar, of a width equal to half of the diameter of the moon approximately. ' "

"The friend, who was within ten meters behind the car, supported by his bicycle, had been able to distinguish it very clearly whereas it passed above them."

"'We discussed it a few minutes, asking us what it was. Perhaps a very large low flying fireball? Anyway, it had disappeared. I thus returned close to my car, and at this point in time I noted that the headlights were off. Entirely busy with the passage of the phenomenon, we had not paid attention. Intrigued, I leaned towards the dashboard, the contact was not off and the lever of the speed gear was still on the reverse gear, the engine being consequently coupled. I disconnected, I actuated the starter, the engine restarted and the headlights gave again their light normally.' "

"Other testimonies indicate that the object crossed main road 2, stopping several cars and causing a splendid traffic jam, that this object, or another, similar, had been seen by witnesses driving by car in the south of Orly, but without causing of incident, that a motorist had observed it more in the west, on the road of Chartres, where it had seemed to go more slowly and where no car was stopped."

The source is indicated as "M.O.C. par Michel Aimé ** Arthaud 1958".

[Ref. uda1:] "UFODNA" WEBSITE:

The website indicates that on 9 October 1954 at 21:20 in Cuisy, France, "Ignition interference: car engine and lights died when yellow-orange cigar passed over." "An object was observed. Electromagnetic effects were noted. One orange cigar-shaped object, larger than a star, was observed by two male witnesses on a highway (Bartoli; Fabre)."

The sources are indicated as Michel, Aime, Flying Saucers and the Straight-Line Mystery, S. G. Phillips, New York, 1958; Bowen, Charles, The Humanoids: FSR Special Edition No. 1, FSR, London, 1966; Vallee, Jacques, Computerized Catalog (N = 3073); Vallee, Jacques, A Century of Landings (N = 923), (in JVallee04), Chicago, 1969; Schoenherr, Luis, Computerized Catalog (N = 3173); Carrouges, Michel, Les Apparitions de Martiens, Fayard, Paris, 1963; Hall, Richard H., The UFO Evidence, NICAP, Washington, 1964; Rodeghier, Mark, UFO Reports Involving Vehicle Interference, CUFOS, Chicago, 1981; Falla, Geoffrey, Vehicle Interference Project, BUFORA, London, 1979; Hatch, Larry, *U* computer database, Author, Redwood City, 2002.

[Ref. ubk1:] "UFO-DATENBANK":

This database recorded this case 5 times:

Case Nr. New case Nr. Investigator Date of observation Zip Place of observation Country of observation Hour of observation Classification Comments Identification
19541009 09.10.1954 Chartres France
19541009 09.10.1954 Cuisy France 21.20 CE II
19541009 09.10.1954 Cuisy France 21.20 CE II
19541009 09.10.1954 Cuisy France 21.20 CE II
19541009 09.10.1954 Cuisy France CE II

Explanations:

Map.

Either Aimé Michel lied, or Barthel and Brucker lied, or Mr. Bartoli was really questioned by the latter but did not remember well at that time the details concerning the engine and the headlights. It also seems logical that even if Mr. Bartoli had said he did not remember if his headlights were on, there is little chance that in October at 9:20 p.m. he would have made a reverse gear drive with the headlights off. And we see that the Barthel and Brucker version of "not remembering" whether the headlights were on seems to be a distortion of what Mr. Batholi said, having found that the headlights were off only after the phenomenon had passed.

What seems obvious to me is that neither Michel, nor Barthel and Brucker, understood that a ufological investigation requires the publication of a precise and detailed investigation report, with for example the date on which it was carried out.

Furthermore, it should be obvious that the UFO in question may have been a meteor, which Mr. Bartoli did consider. It is however not a certainty, but the other sightings Michel mentioned would suggest it.

I still have to dig into an idea that has been in my mind for a long time: it is unthinkable that the electromagnetic waves emitted by a meteor crossing the air it ionizes could disrupt a vehicle's operation?

Keywords:

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

Cuisy, Saint-Soupplets, Seine-et-Marne, car, stall, headlight, power, luminous, cigar, orange, yellow, road, André Bartoli, Jean-Jacques Lalevée, mechanics

Sources:

[----] indicates sources that are not yet available to me.

Document history:

Version: Created/Changed by: Date: Change Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross August 26, 2004 First published.
1.0 Patrick Gross March 8, 2009 Conversion from HTML to XHTML Strict. First formal version. Additions [rhl1], [lcn1], [uda1].
1.1 Patrick Gross February 20, 2017 Addition [ubk1].
1.2 Patrick Gross December 20, 2019 Addition [lhh1], Summary. Explanations changed, were "Not looked for yet."
1.3 Patrick Gross August 15, 2021 Additions [ask1], [ufa1], [mrr1], [lgs1].

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