West New York's "Flying Disc" Is Weather Balloon
The mystery of the flying saucers hit the metropolitan area at 1 p.m. yesterday when a woman telephoned West New York [New Jersey] police to report a circular object falling from the sky into a tree at 56th street and Palisade avenue.
Radio Dispatcher Joseph Barone sent Patrolmen Anthony Di Ciccio and Sal Bille to the scene and they removed a regular United States Government weather balloon and radio broadcasting device from the tree.
The report of a flying saucer landing in West New York spread quickly and within an hour a dozen newspaper photographers and as many newspapermen appeared at police headquarters.
The large rubber balloon that took the weather recording equipment aloft was still attached to the paper parachute used to permit the device to come down at the speed desired by weather observers. The balloon, after reaching its maximum height of 12 miles, burst, automatically releasing the parachute.
Attached to a circular piece of plastic that held the parachute lines--the plastic ring in the air might look like the mysterious flying discs reported in the northwest--was a four-by-eight-inch box containing the radio equipment. In large letters on the side of the box was the following warning:
"This instrument was released by a United States Government Weather Station. It was sent aloft by means of a balloon ascending to a height of about 12 miles. The balloon burst and the instrument functioned as a radio broadcaster of the temperature, pressure and humidity of the air through which it passed.
"Caution: This box contains an acid battery. Destroy or dispose of this box locally.
"Do not present to postal service for mailing.
"Postmaster: This box contains acid. Do not accept for mailing."
Captain Richard Furlong, head of the radio police, said the instruments would be kept for 24 hours and then disposed of in the Hudson River.