ALSACAT -> Home 

Cette page en françaisCliquez!


ALSACAT is my comprehensive catalog of UFO sighting reports in Alsace, the region is the North-East of France, whether they are "explained" or "unexplained".

The ALSACAT catalog is made of case files with a case number, summary, quantitative information (date, location, number of witnesses...), classifications, all sources mentioning the case with their references, a discussion of the case in order to evaluate its causes, and a history of the changes made to the file. A general index and thematic sub-catalogs give access to these Alsatian case files.

Previous case Next case >

Case of Erstein, on August 5, 1973:

Case number:



In his 1974 UFO book, ufologist Charles Garreau said that on August 5, 1973, at 9 p.m., several people from the region of Strasbourg, Erstein and Furchhausen had followed the passage of a luminous, quite large, that moved from the northwest to the southeast.


Temporal data:

Date: August 5, 1973
Time: 09:00 p.m.
First known report date: 1974
Reporting delay: Hours, 1 year.

Geographical data:

Department: Bas-Rhin
City: Furchhausen
Place: ?
Latitude: 48.422
Longitude: 7.662
Uncertainty radius: 3 km

Witnesses data:

Number of alleged witnesses: ?
Number of known witnesses: ?
Number of named witnesses: ?
Witness(es) ages: ?
Witness(es) types: ?

Ufology data:

Reporting channel: ?
Type of location: ?
Visibility conditions: Night
UFO observed: Yes
UFO arrival observed: Yes
UFO departure observed: Yes
Entities: No
Photographs: No.
Sketch(s) by witness(es): No.
Sketch(es) approved by witness(es): No.
Witness(es) feelings: Puzzled.
Witnesses interpretation: ?


Hynek: LN
ALSACAT: Possible meteor or space junk.



- At 9 p.m. [on August 5, 1973], several people of the area of Strasbourg, Erstein and Fuchhausen [sic] follow the passage of a luminous object, quite big, moving from the north-west to the south-east.


1973, August 5

France, Strasbourg, Erstein, Fuchhausen [sic]

Several people in the area are following the passage of a fairly large luminous object, which is moving from the northwest to the southeast. (Charles GARREAU: "Alerte dans le ciel: le dossier des enlèvements" Alain Lefeuvre pub. 1981, p.249)



Erstein (67) on 05 August 1973

General features

Num Base: 854
Department: Bas Rhin (67)
Place of observation: Erstein
Latitude: 48.433
Longitude: +7.666
Date of observation: 05 August 1973
Hour: 21:00 hours
Duration (HH:MM:SS): N.C.
Weather: No weather indication
Type of observation: Visual: Distant
Nbr of witness(es): undetermined number
Official investigation: No

Features of the object

Nbr of object: 1
Type of object: Not-defined
Size: Not specified
Color: not defined
Luminosity: Brilliant
Visual characteristics: No indication
Speed: not defined
Movement/Displacement: In straight line
Object on the ground: No
Instantaneous disappearance: No


Observation of a quite big luminous object that moves from the North west to the southeast.


Soucoupes volantes, 25 ans d'enquêtes by Garreau Charles ** Mame


City Date and hour of observation General shape
General color
ERSTEIN Sunday 5 August 1973 at 21h00 information not communicated
information not communicated
Unsolved -lack of info



Charles Garreau unfortunately often interpreted meteors as alien spacecraft (example here).

The total lack of any description and any primary source reference makes it a speculation only, but the meteor is quite likely, given the spread of observations.


The distance from Furchhausen to Erstein is about 36 km; which reinforces the idea of a meteor - or something quite high in the sky.

Note that UFOCAT lists a sighting on 5 August 1973 at 9 p.m. in Bulle, Switzerland, just southeast of the places, of a "flying disc" seen by four witnesses including someone named Dupasquier. This reinforces the possibility of a large meteor.

There is still another possibility: that day at 05:45 p.m., the Russian rocket D-1-e / Proton-K / A (8K82K 281-01 / 11S824) was launched from Baikonur, carrying the Mars lander "Mars 6".

So it was, perhaps, the fall of debris from this rocket.

I cannot for now "scientifically prove" any explanation; I am interested in any serious information to reinforce or eliminate one possibility or another.


Possible meteor or space junk.

Sources references:

* = Source is available to me.
? = Source I am told about but could not get so far. Help needed.

File history:


Main author: Patrick Gross
Contributors: None
Reviewers: None
Editeur: Patrick Gross

Changes history:

Version: Create/changed by: Date: Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross July 10, 2015 Creation, [cgu1], [lcn1], [spa1].
1.0 Patrick Gross July 10, 2015 First published.
1.1 Patrick Gross January 18, 2023 Addition [goe1].

Valid XHTML 1.0 Strict

 Feedback  |  Top  |  Back  |  Forward  |  Map  |  List |  Home
This page was last updated on January 18, 2023.