Drivers pulled off the road to get a video of an eerie set of "light pillars" over Bangor on Tuesday night.

Where Were They Seen?

I can understand why people would have stopped to get a better look at the lights that seem to come out of nowhere. If there were a couple of columns, I would assume they were spotlights from some new business or event. But a bunch of uniform lights like those seen over outer Hammond Street would startle me, much like the first time I saw Starlink and wondered why I was looking at a line of lights in space moving as if they were attached (which they are.)

Sylvia Thibeault was on Outer Hammond Street in Bangor when she noticed the light pillars and pulled over to the side of the road to shoot this video.

What Caused the Lights to Appear?

What Sylvia and others saw is a natural phenomenon known as 'light pillars.' According to Accuweather, light pillars are caused when light is refracted by ice crystals. Conditions have to be just right for this to happen, including extremely cold temperatures, calm conditions with no wind, and ice crystals that have formed near the ground.

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Is This a New England Phenomenon Or Are They Seen in Other Places?

The Weather Network posted on YouTube a video of some incredible images of ice pillars near Manitoba, Canada.

 

Weather conditions in Bangor Tuesday night were just right for this optical phenomenon that most often reflects street lights into the atmosphere. A cool spectacle on a very cold night. I know I'll be watching the sky for them the next time temperatures dip into the single digits.

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