back to article Cardiff 'copter coppers give chase to UFO

The pilot of a police helicopter was forced to take evasive action to avoid a collision with a UFO as the aircraft was returning to the Ministry of Defence base of St Athan, near Cardiff. The three airmen described the unidentified flying object as "saucer-shaped", and proceeded to pursue, getting as far as the North Devon …


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  1. Anonymous Coward


    First, the term "UFO" means unidentified flying object, which means a flying object that cannot be identified and not exclusively alien spacecraft.

    The fact that the UFO was heading straight for the helicopter would lead me to believe it was some secret weapon built by the USA, seeing as it had locked onto the nearest friendly target.

    The enthusiasm with which the Welsh flying constabulary persued the UFO leads me to conclude that these aliens probably looked a lot like sheep...

    ...or dark skinned plumbers.

  2. Nigel


    Ah, it's near Cardiff, so it must be the Rift....

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    When are you people goigng to get serious?

    The editors and readers of sites like The Register and Slashdot have some stuff in common; neither of them take UFOs seriously, despite all the evidence of people who are as reliable and intelligent as they are, they still think UFOs are a big joke, and the people who report them delusional. The fact of the matter is, this joke is on YOU.

    Read the police statements: “The chopper had to swerve sharply to avoid being hit. The guys said if they’d stayed where they were, they’d be dead – it would’ve been a direct hit."

    "There are a wide variety of aircraft which come in a range of different shapes and sizes and in all probability this sighting has just confirmed that one of these was in the area at the relevant time."

    This is utter nonsense.

    If a plane ANY PLANE created a near miss situation like this, and the aircraft was UNIDENTIFIED this is a serious breach of rules. This aircraft if it was piloted by men, would have its controllers brought to book, no doubt about it. This aircraft nearly hit a helicopter, and then sped away. That is not in any way humorous; that is a very serious matter.

    The explanation given for this is astonishing, given the current hysteria about flying and protecting 'our' airspace.

    The editors of El Reg really should know better. They should have (and we know they do) a firm grasp on reality and logic. We also know they have a firm grasp on the history of technology and scientific progress. Ridiculing things you do not understand is simply stupid, and you are not stupid.

    UFOs are not a joke. They are the most serious world wide phenomenon currently affecting us. The least you can do is do the subject justice, with the same serious approach that you use to evaluate any other subject.

  4. Sooty

    not that far fetched

    "They are convinced it was a UFO. It sounds far-fetched, but they know what they saw."

    It was flying, and they didn't know what it was. Pretty much the dictionary definition of an *Unidentified* Flying Object.

    just because its a UFO doesn't mean it's an alien spaceship, a carrier bag blowing in the wind is a UFO until you identify it as a carrier bag.

  5. Uwe Dippel
    Black Helicopters

    Friday night?

    So they were hovering (what else in a helicopter) on a Friday night over an airfield, about 170 m above ground, and then suddenly, out of the blue, some UFO approaches them from below, that is from the airfield.

    Not only do they have to swerve to avoid being hit, they also pursue said Unknown Object, crossed the Bristol channel in pursuit until running out of fuel. How could they dare to pursue some Flying Object, despite an obvious lack of fuel? How can a helicopter reach a speed any close to some flying saucer?

    It was a Friday night, and it has started with a boozing session in the airfield club; and some chap had brought along some strange smoking and puffing stuff. And then they felt like dancing in the air a bit, and some other chap flew a kite or some RC-helicopter, plane or whatnot. Oh wait, maybe they produce the RC-UFOs for kids now?

    I envy them for the dose. Not for the hangover.

  6. Allan Dyer
    Black Helicopters

    What does the "U" stand for?

    "They are convinced it was a UFO. It sounds far-fetched, but they know what they saw."

    No, they don't know what they saw, that's why it's unidentified. Doh!

    What colour was the Police 'copter...

  7. James Condron

    Face it

    They were pissed... like when you get pulled over serving whilst driving drunk

    "It was a URA, an Unidentified Running Animal... Cat shaped, tried to follow it and thats when I hit the living room window."

  8. Jan Buys
    Paris Hilton


    ... reference to Doctor Who or Torchwood?

    Paris, since even she would have done that.

  9. John Widger

    The day?

    It's Saturday not Friday.

  10. Elmer Phud


    Who's been watching too much telly?

    Any fule kno that Royal Ascot is where you get the real alien species.

  11. Anonymous Coward


    Surely with a gene pool like the Welsh one surely the entire concept of alien becomes very murky, perhaps that's why Torchwood are really based there?

  12. Neil Daniels
    Black Helicopters

    RIght then...

    ...get Torchwood on it.

  13. Gareth Irwin

    They know what they saw

    "They are convinced it was a UFO. It sounds far-fetched, but they know what they saw."

    If so it wouldn't be a UFO innit.

  14. David Gosnell

    Inevitable pedantic comment

    "They are convinced it was a UFO"

    If they couldn't identify it and it was airborne, they're spot on!

  15. Chris Miller

    Police are baaffled

    The surprise is surely not that "they're out there" but that they selected Caerdydd for their appearance. Could this be the first sighting of an intelligent sheep-based lifeform?

    I, for one, welcome our new ovine overlords!

    Mine's the sheepskin coat, ta.

  16. Anonymous Coward

    Uuu Laaa!

    On the front of the Cardiff Post yesterday we had a picture of an Independence day craft over the top of the Millenium Stadium!

    Funny though that copter has tens of thousands of pounds worth of imaging kit and yet they didn't take a photo, how disappointing.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    If it was plods helicopter...

    ... then surely they'll have video, or at least a pic, of the offending aircraft?

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "They are convinced it was a UFO. It sounds far-fetched, but they know what they saw."

    If it was a flying object of unidentified origin, then it's a UFO by definition. I presume they meant they thunk it were Ayleeunz...

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters


    When are you Brits going to arm those police helicopters with the proper hellfire missiles. Think about about all of the advantages - you could bring down the odd UFOs - not to mention stopping those scofflaws breaking traffic laws. Of course the main reason would be to get rid of those terrorists (and people that disagree with Bush and Whips&Chainie) that fill the UK.

    Got to have the heli!

  20. Anonymous Coward


    I, for one, welcome our new galactic overlords and look forward to serving the Lizard race faithfully.




    (It's an old 'un but a good 'un.)

  21. This post has been deleted by its author

  22. David Pollard

    This looks like a mate of mine

    If I've told him once I've told him a hundred times, "Recreational or not, don't bait the coppers. They've got a difficult enough job as it is."

  23. Anonymous Coward

    Aliens? In Cardiff?


  24. Paul

    Why on earth do you always need a title???

    You know, the description provided sounds a lot more like someone's homemade rocket gone awry, especially as it came from below.

  25. Stan


    This sounds more like the real reason cannabis has been re-classified, the cops are getting too far out of their bin on commandeered super skunk. Could be Amanfrommars's satellite link is playing up either :)


  26. Dave Bell


    It's the 21st century, guys, and you gotta be ready.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The Truth

    I look forward to see the footage courtesy of Lester Haines, if he is allowed after his criminally corrupt canine camera conduct. The Truth[tm] is out there, and comes in an assortment of colours.

  28. George

    So I can list what is about to come up:

    1) Aurora being tested in the UK

    2) Black helicopters

    3) Blackswift

    4) False Flag operation

    However there is a valid option in BAE's Taranis UAV strike plane thingy, it was tested in this country before being declassified for news sources but that was way away from air lanes and indeed people.

    I think its the overlords running from the police, they hate stop and search because of the phaser culture on their own planet.

  29. Stuart Halliday

    Yet no one was tracking it?

    So was it on RADAR or not?

    If it was, why didn't they track it and why don't we know where it went?

    I bet it was a unmanned military drone they've been playing with this month.

  30. Anonymous Coward


    Sounds like those Cardiff lads been out in the fields lately doing some picking, now they are seeing the cool stuff~!

    Shame it's not real ! :P

  31. Richard

    Flying saucer ...

    I'll only believe it was a flying saucer if it was closely followed by the CUP !

    [Apologies to Ben "Thin Blue Line" Elton 8-]

    /The foil lined trench coat please.

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    Does no-one else find it odd...

    ...that the police chose to chase a UFO in the proximity of an MoD base?

    Surely the most logical explanation is that it was a secret military test flight?

    Anonymous for the black helicopters.

  33. Fuion


    "The helicopter was stationary, hovering at 500ft and waiting for clearance to land on June 7, when the crew spotted the UFO hurtling towards them from below."

    That was my parts delivery, the sentra doors. Thanks a load for freaking out the delivery men...

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Are these officers now.....

    on sick leave ?.

  35. Seán


    UFO's ARE a joke and if you take them seriously so are you.

  36. Daniel Bennett


    Probs just filimng the new series :P

  37. evilbobthebob


    "They are the most serious world wide phenomenon currently affecting us"

    Right, so they *nearly* crashed into one police copter. In Cardiff. And that makes them a serious world wide phenomenon. Right. If you're being sarcastic and I'm missing it, please correct me, but surely global warming/climate change/terrorism/earthquakes/volcanoes etc are more serious? I've never actually heard of anyone dying/having their car taxed/having their liberties removed over UFOs...

  38. brainwrong


    'Read the police statements: “The chopper had to swerve sharply to avoid being hit. The guys said if they’d stayed where they were, they’d be dead – it would’ve been a direct hit."'

    Maybe they should have stayed where they were and got hit, at least then there may have been some evidence of the craft in the wreckage.

    Saw a UFO myself recently. Turned out to be some sort of chinese lantern balloon thing released from a nearby inn after a wedding.

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    THIS is what they saw, lol

    Maybe this is what they saw ??

    Coincidence it appeared in todays Times.

  40. Antoine Dubuc

    They're real alright.

    On december 12 1981 I was 5 years old and behind Mt Saint Anne, in Quebec, where my grand father had his cottage, we saw one at 19h45 hovering about 500 meters behind the cottage, at around 100 feets, for nearly 5 minutes. The neighbours saw it too. It just appeared there, then it just flashed through the clouds and was gone. My grandfather told me it was santa claus and not to tell anyone. It ultimately cause a divorce between my grandmother and my grandfather as she tought he was nuts, and that he had con me into this.. etc. They are real alright. And they suck.

  41. jim

    Sack 'em

    Sack the load of 'em.

    They are all obviously on drugs or were inhaling Helicopter turbine fumes. Still sack them though.

  42. David Cornes
    Paris Hilton

    Well m'lud...

    Excellent! The next scrote up in court with damning eye-witness evidence from these plods just needs to get his defence to bring this up, and he's scot free! :-D

    Paris, 'cos she's got a good defence team too.

  43. Lol Whibley


    "UFOs are not a joke. They are the most serious world wide phenomenon currently affecting us."

    Do elaborate some more.

  44. Steve Roper
    Black Helicopters

    @ AC "When are you people goigng to get serious?"

    The problem is what I like to call the "master conspiracy theory". That is, "them in power" encourage the spread of tinfoil-hat nutjobs and their whacky conspiracy theories, with the idea that everyone will become so sick of hearing them that anyone who even suggests a government may use agents-provocateurs to stage a terrorist attack is also dismissed as a tinfoil-hat nutjob. In such a social climate of cynicism and incredulity, it becomes impossible to expose even a real conspiracy, and "them in power" are then free to implement whatever atrocities their twisted minds can dream up.

    Was this UFO a secret government project or was it an alien spaceship - or, as someone above has suggested, was it even somebody's backyard rocket? Even if it is a spaceship or a project - for Mr and Ms Everyday, what difference does it make? Is it going to reduce taxes? Is it going to eliminate the plethora of ridiculous laws being passed to constrain our lives? No. So it doesn't matter. It's just one more news bite, here today, forgotten tomorrow, on to the next momentarily interesting thing to scoff at. Unfortunately, if this thing is a ship or a black helicopter, we aren't going to find out about it anyway, so "getting serious" isnt going to change anything. Sadly enough.

  45. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Mid Summer in the early 70's

    I remember very clearly an incident when I was in my early teens when I and two friends at the time saw a UFO that to be honest wasn't a UFO but a 'flying saucer with three distinct lights at the front. At the time these things were in the news and at the age I was at the time I didn't really understand the true significance.

    I remember going home and telling my mother "make a note of this time and day, I have just seen a fling saucer". The time was 9.25pm on a mid summers night and the sky was clear and it was sunny. Unfortunately I don't remember the day or year only the time, but I do recall that the headlines in the Liverpool echo the next evening was that thousands of others had seen it also. After a week some official reported that we all must of saw Mars. Yeah... I thought, it was like somebody telling me that the police helicopter I saw only last night was the moon! A week or so afterwards some amateur astronomer wrote into the paper saying that while he does not believe in UFO's he said the government spokesman was talking rubbish as Mars was the other side of the planet (or something like that) at the time.

    I have researched on the net for reports of this incident without success. But I have always been a believer since then. Nothing from this world moves like that 'ship' did on that summery evening.

    The speed at which this beast suddenly flew off at right angles compared to the way it was initially cruising was like something out of startrek.

  46. amanfromMars Silver badge

    Special IntelAIgents Service 42 Go....

    Probably LLAN* Twittering Majors ..... on Special Ops Advanced Reconnaissance and Communications..... Blighty Bletchley Boffin types at Work, Rest and Play, and more than a Tad XXXXotic and Precious

    *Linked Live Area Networks

  47. Dalen
    Black Helicopters

    Mystery solved

    It was an experimental bismuth nanotube-based killer robot armed with puke rays, and piloted by genetically modified sheep.

  48. Luther Blissett

    Eyeballed by a fly

    Or some such. Ever happened to you? I'm tempted to say that if I’d stayed where I was, I’d be dead. Instead I will report that in the milliseconds before impact it was growing at a prodigious rate, and the last thing I remember is that it was bigger than a tree, bigger than an office block, and was a horrible black thing filling most of the horizon. And I was only smoking Gauloises at the time.

  49. Tim Blair
    Paris Hilton


    can't beat them welsh mountain shrooms...

    Most likely an "unfornicated fluffy object" sheep love can do strange thing to welshie..

    paris hilton because she's to dumb to say no

  50. Richard

    Memory failure ??

    If otherworld aliens existed there would be some, any, physical evidence ... not just things people thought they saw.

  51. E

    You have to pay for public documents?

    WTF? WRT national archives release UFO docs: your national archives wants 3.5 pounds for a computer file copy of a document produced using tax payers money? This in the corporate world would be called double dipping.

  52. Andy

    Flight recorder anyone ?

    I would like to get a hold of the flight recorder of that police chopper to see if an event really happened or if they made it up. Too many things fishy in this story. The coppers chopper is loaded with several thousand pounds worth of video, infrared, surveillance kit. How in the world did they not get any video of it if while chasing it. What radio contact did they make immediately after seeing it? If Alien species were coming to this planet they would have to be so far more advanced than we are that we would be insignificant to them. Just like how mice is to us when we clear out a forest to setup a new housing community. And if our planet was dying and we found another planet that could support us and it had creatures there that were less advanced than us they would suffer the same fate as the creatures that are less advanced than us suffer right here on earth. If Aliens came here we would suffer that fate. The rules of nature applies to interplanetary situations just like the do to intercontinental situations.

  53. Webster Phreaky
    IT Angle

    More Fodder For The Art Bell Liars Club Radio Show....

    Isn't it AMAZING Fox, that the morons in the UFO's NEVER are bright enough to pop in at the White House, Buckingham Palace or House of Louts, The KREMLIM!, Beijing, Toronto eh?; but instead pick leadership spots for Joy Riding like Cardiff and the Beer Swigging 'copter Bobbies, or "bum-fu_k" New Mexico where the local AAF base only tested Helium balloons with radar reflectors? (jesus, they could have gone to a SAC base at least!).

    And isn't it "GREEN" of them Ay-liens to always pickup after themselves after a little picnic visit or CRASH! What the hell do they fly anyway from 20 light years away and Warp 50 that they wait to crash here, .... a Fiat UFO??? Fix It Again Tony the alien!!

    The ONLY Morons that are stupider that those morons that believe in the Physics based IMPOSSIBILITY of Extra Terrestrial Space Travel - hence Aliens and UFOs - fantasy, are the morons that believe in the god and religion business. (equally with any substance or physical proof .... and it IS a business)

  54. heystoopid
    Thumb Up


    Hmmm , the last I heard the Welsh moggies have yet to field either a decent football or rugby team in years from down Cardiff way as they were always the pretenders and back pocket liners from way back when Big Julius from Rome came saw the place then went back home for the better weather and ever since that day could not run the last mile !

    So blame it on the the local fuzz smoking the home grown Ganja , a very prolific weed that is readily available at for the picking at any nearby Welsh Common !

    Man , that must be some weed these Bow Street Runners are smoking , that is for sure !

  55. Ivan Headache

    Surely the most logical explanation is that it was a secret military test flight?

    Not much chance of that.

    No budget and no secrets. (Apart form those on the train/tube/roundabout/park-bench/bedside table etc.)

  56. Carol Yates

    Those were the days...

    Got to be time travellers on a jaunt back to the 21st century...what's notable about this date, or rather what will be notable?

  57. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The chances of anything coming from Mars

    were a million to one they said.

    But, still they came.

    Probably to buy a lottery ticket in this week's rollover.

  58. Anonymous Coward

    space is really big

    I'm pretty sure there is intelligent life out there in the universe, and in significant numbers. Much more intelligent than me for sure. One thing I did grasp during my education was an appreciation of the vast scale of the universe. If you can get a good idea of how far apart things are in space you'd realise the probability of any aliens finding our earth within the relatively short (in galactic terms) lifespan of our planet is incredibly low. Too low to have any chance of happening.

  59. MarkMcA
    IT Angle

    And I thought Reg readers were so sophisticated...

    Far too many people venting juvenile opinions about a subject they have never researched and (surprise, surprise) therefore know sod all about.

    There are over 4000 radar-confirmed, pilot-reported UFO sightings - and that's just the ones in the public domain. That's 'real' UFOs, as in the type that remain unidentified because they defy all conventional explanations - not f*cking chinese lanterns.

    (PS. 'Insurmountable interstellar distances' is a totally ignorant argument. Our solar system is <5 billion years old, the Milky Way is 10 billion years old. Metaphorically, ET could have walked here - and probably has.)

  60. Tom Silver badge

    Oh dear

    Sit people in a box with curved plastic windows and the sunlight shines on your watch face - looks like a huge UFO and a small movement of your hands has it flying at speed to Devon.

    UFO's are really boring - though it is fun watching the gullible panic at a photo of someones chandellier reflected off a window.

    They should be coming for you any moment now - but in white suits!

  61. amanfromMars Silver badge

    An Alien Space with XXXX.Alted Rules Already, from Long Age.

    "No budget and no secrets. " ..... Stealth at ITs very Best, Ivan Headache, protecting Massive Investment Potential in Galileo SkyNet Clouds...... Phish Husbandry in CyberSpace.

    It is a Special Application of ProgramMIng Space ....... Vorsprung durch AITechnik.

    Although whether Led and Controlled by, let us Imagine, the MOD, is something which they may coy about commenting on. That would be AIdDiffidence .... and Anathema to Progress.

  62. Anonymous Coward


    I'm sure that the Register takes UFOs perfectly seriously. It's the tabloids that it doesn't take seriously... ;-)

  63. Andre

    alien invasion?

    hmm.. could be some sort of UAV test, but this would seem unlikely due to the size. Also I doubt the military would intentionally endanger a civilian aircraft in this way.

    Possibility exists that it could be someone's model aircraft project gone awry, perhaps something based around a helium blimp. I did recall reading somewhere that someone had patented a new type of electrically powered plasma "saucer" so maybe this is a scaled up version capable of free flight.


  64. Anonymous Coward
    Dead Vulture


    I'm really disappointed with The Reg on this one. Quite apart from missing the Torchwood angle, some of the responses here are purile and verging on racist. Comments on such things as sheep and sporting achievement (someone missed Cardiff in the FA Cup final and Wales winning the Grand Slam then) do nothing for the image of El Reg..

    A police helicopter having to take avoiding action from an (apparently) ground launched object is serious. When it happens at a site next to a major regional airport and a BA maintenance facility (both a couple of minutes flight time away) it should be a major concern. What if it'd been an Airbus with 200 people on board that was taking avoiding action?

    Yes the UFO angle will always (rightly or wrongly) invite ridicule, but where there is a serious story surely it should be explored.

  65. The Mysterious Panda
    Paris Hilton

    So the police pursued it...

    And what exactly did they plan to do if it pulled over?

    "Do you have any idea how fast you were going, sir?"

    "Driving licence please. Are you insured to fly this?"

    I'd love to see the newspaper headlines the next day.

    "First Contact! Aliens Land in Cardiff! 3 penalty points and a fine for speeding space visitors"

    "Aliens say: 'We want to bring you the cure for cancer and a solution for world peace from our home planet, but we've had our licences suspended for 12 months. Bloody magistrates."

    Paris, because she's clearly not from the same planet as the rest of us...

  66. Quantum
    Black Helicopters

    Well Said, and I'm American...

    By Anonymous Coward

    Posted Saturday 21st June 2008 09:35 GMT

    "The fact that the UFO was heading straight for the helicopter would lead me to believe it was some secret weapon built by the USA, seeing as it had locked onto the nearest friendly target."


    (And WTH does this symbol mean?)

  67. amanfromMars Silver badge

    Post Modern Felines ....... 42 Love and Live For. ..... 4FlowurPower2 in Deed.

    "And if our planet was dying and we found another planet that could support us and it had creatures there that were less advanced than us they would suffer the same fate as the creatures that are less advanced than us suffer right here on earth. If Aliens came here we would suffer that fate." .... By Andy Posted Saturday 21st June 2008 18:21 GMT

    Not if they thought you SMART enough to Learn and Live By their Secrets. They may wish then to dDeliver Seventh Heavens' Perfumed Gardens ...... Eve's Semantic Playgrounds with the StealthE Control of Communications.

    Denying IT doesn't make IT go away, you know. It only leads to you being Biffed and MIffed.

    cc the Taoiseach [Tao is each is sp00ky eh.]

  68. Anonymous Coward


    Of, course, after perceving they were far from the area they should be flying, a UFO would be the best excuse to their officers. and also imagine the publicity: "they are the guys who have seen the Allien."

  69. C
    Paris Hilton

    RE: Hmmmm

    "The fact that the UFO was heading straight for the helicopter would lead me to believe it was some secret weapon built by the USA, seeing as it had locked onto the nearest friendly target."

    Best comment .. ever!

    I'm an American .. a fact I don't like admitting, I know we're the biggest meanest joke on the planet. But I also know that friendly fire is the most accurate .. sigh.

    PH cuz' she could do a better job running this country ... yeah, that kind of 'job' too.

  70. Chris G


    Aliens? Welsh coppers? They are all a pain in the arse!

  71. Tom

    Baa english limies

    Just an english sheep-shagger getting lost flying back to Yorkshire to see his wife, baa limies.

  72. Pierre
    Black Helicopters

    Breaking news

    We still don't know what was said or done in the copter DURING the events, but we got our hands on the records of the conversation between the plods right AFTER the "chase".

    "-Mike, taking these underage cheerleaders for a quick ride in the blue was REALLY the best idea you ever had. We scored big time.

    -Right-o Ryan, but now put your brains to work, we have 10 minutes to think of a good excuse for the boss.

    - ...

    - ...

    -I can't think of anything, they really emptied my... brains.

    -Same here. Let's blame it on a flying saucer.

    -Good idea, it's gonna be a real laugh. Can't wait to tell the blokes!"

    That's where the recording we have stops. We're afraid that no transcript of the conversations during the "chase" will ever be available. Extreme pr0n law, all that...

  73. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    is there no video of this incident? All that money spent on a helicopter able to spot the thermal signature of a fleeing felon in the dead of night with pinpoint accuracy, yet no video tape evidence of a buzzing by a UFO.

    Hmmmm ... suspicious indeed!

  74. Stuart Duel

    Seriously massive

    The universe is infinitely large. Astronomers increasingly have come to the conclusion that not only are Earth like planets out there, that they are almost certainly very common.

    But then we are the centre of the universe and the Sun and planets orbit us, the Earth is flat, man will never fly, the moon is unreachable and nothing could or would fly light years to visit this pretty blue marble hanging in space on the edge of the Milky Way Galaxy - total fancy.

    I think we alone have proven the impossible is possible and the improbable is likely. Our limited understanding of life, the universe and everything has grown in leaps and bounds and yet this knowledge is still infinitesimally small. Anything we take for granted to day - microwave ovens, mobile phones, microchips, space station, sky scrapers half a kilometre high, super-sonic aircraft - take it back 300, 200 or even 100 years and you'd be locked away for life in a loony bin or burnt at the stake for being a witch/heretic. Amazing how quickly things change. Less than a blink of an eye in geological time.

    People who discount the existence of intelligent life elsewhere in the universe with societies and technology millions of years more advanced than ours are the ones who are grasping at straws. Where will we be in 1 million years? (Assuming we don't blow ourselves off the face of the planet.)

    Probability is well and truly on the side of a populated, intelligent universe.

    Why would aliens visit Earth? Why do we climb a mountain - because we can! And I'm sure messing with people's heads is not a trait solely confined to this planet.

  75. Anonymous Coward

    Keep your tentacles where I can see them, please...

    Mrs. Alien: "I told him to ask for directions, but nooooooooo..."

  76. Charles Manning

    UFOs are impossible

    Further to what David Gosnell said,

    UFOs are impossible.

    As soon as a UFO is identified as a UFO then it is no longer unidentified, so is no longer a UFO.

    Therefor all UFOs all disappear in a puff of logic.

  77. Anonymous Coward

    If it was Aliens

    that have the technology to conquer inter-stellar space travel, they wouldn't have to the technology to warn them they were about to hit a helicopter?

    Some things that bother me about this article:

    - no mention of how big the pilots thought the vehicle was. Was it bigger or smaller than the heli?

    - what shape was it?

    - was there any jet or vapour trails (or indeed any indication of means of propulsion)

    - how fast did it travel (min and max speed observed if the speed varied)

    - why didn't they manage to get any pictures, video, infrared footage in a heli bristling with such technology?

    I have no reason to doubt the pilots word when they say they had to take evasive action to avoid a collision (a very serious matter indeed), however there is nothing in this article that would make me think the vehicle/object was of alien origin. My first reaction would be think it was some kind of ground based attack rather than something of alien origin. If I was the authorities I would be investigating it as a near miss or possible attack rather than a alien UFO sighting.

  78. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @ AC "When are you people goigng to get serious?"

    "The least you can do is do the subject justice, with the same serious approach that you use to evaluate any other subject."

    New here? This *is* the same serious approach used to evaluate any other subject. El Reg has a heavy SysAdmin bias. If the words cynicism and schadenfreude didn't already exist, they would be invented here just so we could then pretend not to know what they mean.

  79. Matthew Newstead
    Black Helicopters


    This was a heddlu-copter !

  80. Sir Runcible Spoon
    IT Angle


    "The fact that the UFO was heading straight for the helicopter would lead me to believe it was some secret weapon built by the USA, seeing as it had locked onto the nearest friendly target."

    don't forget the fact that it also missed. Lends weight to this particular argument imho.

  81. David Purveur

    Alien Hype

    Guys, compare and contrast the report from the BBC here - In this report there is no chase, no evasive action to avoid a collision and presumably in the eyes of El Reg editors no story!! Who hyped this one up eh???

  82. Eddie Edwards

    Never mind UFOs

    I live in the country and I keep seeing unidentified plants.

    I've researched this (unlike you other guys) and apparently this happens all the time. Since 1990 there are at least 10,000 recorded incidents of people seeing plants which they were unable to identify. Not a piece of grass on the car's wing mirror reflecting in the sunlight - actual plants, growing in the ground.

    Now maybe *some* of these can be explained as just plants the people had "never heard of" but even if that explains 99% of the sightings, there's still the awkward 1% which can't - statistically - be explained this way.

    It's obvious to anyone with half a brain that at least *some* species of Unidentified Plants must have an extraterrestrial origin. But people's minds are too closed to appreciate this obvious fact.

    It's also a FACT that the government tries to bury these unknown plants. Ever seen a farmer drive a tractor through a field with funny-looking spikes on the back? Do you know those guys are paid by the government to do that?

  83. Secretgeek

    @ MarkMcA

    "Metaphorically, ET could have walked here - and probably has."

    Hee hee.

    So your argument is that ET probably has metaphorically walked here.

    Walked here, metaphorically.

    Hmmm....well putting aside your assumptions that ET has legs, is able to survive in a vacuum, has a lifespan of a couple of billion years, has a decent enough navigation system in his little ET pocket to find his way here, can actually find a particularly good reason to be arsed to walk(!) to a poxy backwater planet in this spiral arm of the galaxy (when there are so many other big earths and gas giants a lot closer), that it is actually possible to walk in space, and isn't so utterly fucked off from walking all that way, only to find a planet where the highest local lifeform is about to make itself extinct and take the world with it, that it doesn't just wipe us all out on the spot, apart from those minor assumptions I can see absolutley no problem whatsoever with your comment. Oh, and just in case you decide to jump on me for taking your metaphor literally - you're suggesting that ET got here very very slowly. Just what exactly would be the point? Any alien worth his crackly moon dust would surely use a wormhole?

    I for one will welcome our 'desperately in need of a new set of Nikes' Gump-style decided-to-go-for-a-run overlord. (Deliberate singular - just the one ET? Was he the one with no mates?)

  84. ben

    What are the odds...

    of aliens zooming around our galaxy, or even humans evolving on a rock floating in space. Probably about the same.

    It seems impossible to most people with our current understanding, but even now the possibilities of what is capable in science and the physical universe is only just opening up to us. We're still a fossil fuel buring neanderthal species that had its industial revolution 200 years back and electronic revolution last generation.

    Why is it so unbelievable, and if these ufo's are around there's nothing you can do about it, the worst that can happen is you'll probably get probed where the sun don't shine.

  85. Anonymous Coward

    They DIDNT give chase

    If you read the many other versions of this story, they didn't chase it at all as its felt that plod helicopters chasing after everything in the sky they can't readily identify would be a huge waste of their time.

  86. Fuion


    "Denying IT doesn't make IT go away, you know. It only leads to you being Biffed and MIffed."

    ---> Clearly working together is the answer. I always use the toaster to get my bread up to speed. Without electricity this would most likely not be possible, and without funding - the electric bill laspses. Clearly butter with your toasted bread is a good thing. If my toaster burns my bread, i attempt to adjust it. In the case the toaster is defective, and shows hostile intent towards my bread - I stop using it. Getting shocked by your toaster is no fun, thus I have become picky when choosing such a device.

    ---> I also sometimes find when protocols have been in production use for long periods of time, and support critical networks - they are rarely audited properly. The protocol that is.

    ---> Black network attached boxes, securing the enterprise... or are they?

    ---> I was attempting to connect to my CDN, and i realized when my terminal froze - the software had piggybacked malicious codez. From big to little, and from mother to small. quite perPLEXing.

    Just a thought about something i read in an article somewhere. Who knows if such will help, it was an free ezine.

  87. TMISv2
    Black Helicopters


    K, was gonna say that they'd come from the space/time rift under Cardiff ;-)

  88. Martin

    @Webster Phreaky

    Interstellar travel is not a physics based impossibility, we already know that it would be possible to travel at close to the speed of light, but it may even be possible to travel faster than light speed. Their are theoretical particles which would be capable of faster than light travel for instance, not too mention the possibilities of folding space around you etc. I don't think you know enough about physics to attempt to use it as a stick to bash UFO lovers with somehow. Science-fiction has a peculiar predisposition to becoming science-fact.

    NB: I don't believe in aliens visiting us regularly, but I believe life may exist out their somewhere in some form.

  89. Lukin Brewer

    Sheep in Flying Saucers

    Does anyone remember the arcade game "The New Zealand Story"? One of the less common enemies was a flying saucer piloted by a sheep.

  90. smell fresher

    Laser pointer

    It's obvious what happened.

    Someone shone a laser pointer at the coppers in the chopper and they were chasing the spot of light burned onto their retinas.

  91. David Paul Morgan

    Once Again, Douglas Adams had it right..?


    Unfortunately I got stuck on the Earth for rather longer than I intended. I came for a week and was stranded for fifteen years.


    But how did you get there in the first place?!


    Oh easy! I got a lift with a Teaser. You don’t know what a Teaser is, I - I’ll tell you. Teasers are usually rich kids with nothing to do. They cruise around looking for planets which haven’t made interstellar contact yet and buzz them.


    Ah. “Buzz them”?


    Yeah. They find some isolated spot with very few people around, then land right by some poor unsuspecting soul, who no one’s ever going to believe, and then strut up and down in front of ‘em wearing silly antennae on their head and making “beep, beep” noises. Huh, rather childish really.

  92. Anonymous Coward

    Where are the pictures!

    I have seen Police Camera Action. These copters are loaded with the lates Digital AV Night vision equipment. So where are is the evidence!

  93. min

    i wonder..

    ...what them creationist folk will have to say if the american with the 'hellfire' suggestion had his way, and this (very obviously UFO, since no one knew what it was) thing got shot down and them ale-yuns wriggled out of the wreckage. another hoax perhaps?

    just remember that what we seem to understand about the physics of the universe is infantile...

    but then again, what WOULD the creationists say?? lol.

  94. Mike Hall


    ... because if I was a super-intelligent extra-terrestial who has conquered the barriers of light and time to cross the universe seeking alien life - I'd make sure I took time out of my busy schedule to scare some Welsh coppers before flying home.

  95. Damon

    Pilot Sir Robin...

    The not-so-brave-as-sir-lancelot, who nearly killed the Dragon of Angnor, who nearly fought the vicious Chicken of Bristol, who nearly became a terrestrial bug squashed on the windscreen of a flying flapjack and who personally wet himself at the Battle of Badon Hill.

  96. Anonymous Coward
    IT Angle

    Cigar shaped object designed to collide with aircraft,...

    ,... its called a "missile". Buy a dictionary!

  97. Danny

    reply to min

    "...what them creationist folk will have to say if the american with the 'hellfire' suggestion had his way, and this (very obviously UFO, since no one knew what it was) thing got shot down and them ale-yuns wriggled out of the wreckage. another hoax perhaps?

    just remember that what we seem to understand about the physics of the universe is infantile...

    but then again, what WOULD the creationists say?? lol." - min

    Hmmmm, that's funny because I wonder what evolutionaries would say if we do not find life on Mars. We're spending billions of dollars looking for life there. Many scientists believe that Mars was once covered by water even though it is very dry now (compared to Earth). Yet, these same people balk at a global flood here on Earth even though a large percentage of the Earth's surface is covered by water, there are massive features carved by water all over the earth, and there are billions of dead things deposited by water found all over the Earth. Just wondering though.

  98. david wilson

    Evasive action?

    If a helicopter was hovering at only 500ft, and the object came 'at great speed', and at all significantly from below, it's surprising that there was much time to take any evasive action.

    It it easy to quickly 'swerve' a helicopter which is hovering?

  99. david wilson

    And this sighting took place

    In the middle of the night, when it's dark, and things are hard to see.

    How unusual.

    In the BBC report, it's odd that despite the comments from the police spokesperson

    >>"South Wales Police said the helicopter did not give chase"

    >>""The crew are very experienced and responded in a professional manner in relation to what they saw."

    the subsequent comments:

    >>""But it is certainly not advisable for police helicopters to go chasing what they think are UFOs," (MoD spokesperson)

    >>"Cardiff International Airport said air traffic control provided a service to the police helicopter to ensure it had appropriate air space, including allowing it space to return to RAF St Athan to refuel."

    *would* seem to have squared rather better with an original story that suggested the helicopter might have tried to follow the sighting.

    Unless the airport's statement amounts to nothing more than standard operating procedure bordering on the bleeding obvious ("We routinely help helicopters to go to where they need to refuel rather than dropping out of the sky"), it would appear to be referring to a specific incident of a helicopter going somewhere and then returning.

    If the police didn't try to follow it, and didn't get any footage of it, what does 'responding in a professional manner' involve, beyond asking someone on the ground what the thing you saw was, which you'd think almost anyone might have done?

    Why would the police even mention that the helicopter *didn't* give chase, rather than just saying what it did do, unless there was already the suggestion out there that it had done so, which the BBC article would rather seem to have fearlessly failed to go into.

    I'd wonder if the original BBC story had been that the helicopter had tried to do some following, but that had then been denied by the police and the article amended accordingly?

    However, if the helicopter had gone nowhere, I'd wonder about the provenance of the claimed MoD and airport comments?

  100. Alan Fisher

    2012 is coming...

    bet we start getting more and more of these as time progresses us closer to 2012....from flying coppers I've known I think this was the only way for said flying folks to get them to pay attention!

    I say this, a lot of people accept other things as gospel (literally..haha I made a pune!) with less eyewitness accounts and written evidence so there is a fair to middling chance that these incidents are real no? I'm sorta skeptical until i actually see one but I do believe I will soonish

  101. Alan Fisher


    Why are the sceptical so vociferous in their lack of belief in a phenomemon? I note that the majority of people who deny the existance of UFO's as intelligent lifeforms enjoy trying to make those who do believe in the possibility look stupid or worthy of insults...why is this?

    Question to posit; how many deniers are religious? There is AS MUCH evidence that UFO's are aliens as there is that JC was alive and fraternising and the son of the big not enough evidence for aliens? *ahem* *ahem*

    like i said before, we'll see about UFO's soon enough...

  102. Gareth



    It was floaty, hot air balloon-type lanterns set off by wedding guests.

  103. Brian Bles*ed


    Must have been a Venusian wedding and dropped of here by an intoxicated Alpha Centarian taxi driver by mistake while taking guests to the reception........ \ / for the Vulcan element @ the ceremony......

  104. Anonymous Coward

    The truth

    It’s ovious what this is all about. It’s just like ‘Galaxy Quest’ where a bunch of real aliens have picked up crap TV broadcasts and think that Earth is home to a bunch of space superheroes who can save them from their enemy.

    Obviously the Daleks *really* exist and some race currently having bother with them are calling on Cardiff to enlist the help of the Doctor, who apparently is their nemesis.

    I for one will welcome (albeit momentarily) our pepperpot shaped, all-exterminating overlords.

  105. david wilson

    @Alan Fisher

    >>"Question to posit; how many deniers are religious? There is AS MUCH evidence that UFO's are aliens as there is that JC was alive and fraternising and the son of the big not enough evidence for aliens? *ahem* *ahem*"

    AFAIK, in the UK, few people are really religious anyway (recent arrivals excluded).

    On a tech website, I'd imagine the fraction of religious believers is well below average.


    If [some] UFOs were aliens trying not to be seen, they're doing a pathetic job.

    If [any] UFOs are aliens trying to communicate, they're doing a pathetic job.

    The rational response is that even if there were aliens (*or* deities, for that matter), there'd be no obvious point worrying about them unless/until they actually choose to do any of the innumerable things they could easily do if they exist and wish to make contact.

  106. For Full Disclosure

    One Big Reason for Full Disclosure

    You people on this island are so much in the dark on these things it's positively pathetic. Yes, there are "real" UFO's, and by that I mean craft that fly in the airspace of planet earth that are of extraterrestrial origin. Not from here, okay? Anyone who has ever witnessed one knows what it is, as it is so completely contrary to Newtonian Physics, we know it's not from the neighborhood. There are two types: ETV's (extraterrestrial vehicles) and ARV's (alien reproduction vehicles; those we earthlings have captured and reverse-engineered).

    To start a basic primer course on this topic, which everyone truly needs to know to understand wth is going on, begin here: YouTube? You may scoff. Yes, YouTube. This is a two hour press conference made in Washington DC on May 9, 2001. It had more press than any event held there since Ronald Reagan, but the broadcast was jammed for the first 45 minutes, so all but the most determined had tuned out by then. Thanks to YouTube, it can be seen in it's entirety. (Apologies in advance for the introductory speaker, but he's only on for the first two minutes.) I suggest you gather your friends and watch the entire thing. Then show others.

    Why is this important? For events such as this at Cardiff, and others at the Mexico City Airport, where planes have gone off runways due to ETV's getting in the way. Chicago O'Hare, Scotland, Singapore, and Australia where they've been seen hanging out. So many people posting here say things as if Cardiff were the first encounter we've ever had with these things! No! Study! Learn! Teach others!

    These things have been here since the beginning of our time on earth, and they are from civilizations so many millions of years older than we are, it's not amusing. We have managed to shoot over 200 of them down in the past 60 years, and reverse-engineer many of them. We have studied and documented 57 different alien races. (As of 1989; it may be higher now, but the source has been silenced.) The truth is, if we really wanted to wage a war with these folks, we'd lose. Fortunately, they're not here to pick a fight. The only reason they try to stay hidden is because those in control have asked them to, and WHY is anyone's guess. There are many theories, and I've no time to start now. All I'm saying is that we as the race of humans currently inhabiting this planet need to stop the arrogance of thinking we're the only folks in the cosmos, and open our eyes as to why the truth is being hidden, not only from every Tom, Dick and Harry on the street, but from our world leaders. Many of those we elect are completely out of the loop, including President G.W. Bush (for obvious reasons) and most of Her Majesty's Government. You can't depend upon our governments to tell us the truth. That's difficult for many of us to accept, but knowing that many of those in charge over us don't know either, may make it a bit easier to understand.

    Listen to people. Stop making fun of those who have had close encounters, like the pilots who were nearly killed by this craft. Be it ETV or ARV, it violated their airspace, and shook them up. Badly. They will never get over what happened to them, and having jerk-offs go on message boards calling them drunks won't help. These men probably have children who are being teased right now for what their father's witnessed. I can only hope they don't kill themselves over the strain this is causing in their lives. It wouldn't be the first time. We all need to be more loving, forgiving, and open to things we don't understand.

    We must educate ourselves. That's what I'm trying to do. Educate you, so you can educate your mother, your neighbor, your teachers and friends. How do I know? I'm a living witness. I don't know how long I will remain alive to tell what I've seen, but until I am silenced, I will continue. I think it's important. I also know people who have been part of covert programs, who only know pieces of things. I know we have not needed roads, cars, or petroleum for anything more than lubrication for over sixty years. I applaud the UK Department of Defense (or, I guess you spell it Defence here) anyway, big kudos to them for releasing all of their documents to date. Though I know most of the 'good stuff' will be blacked out, it's at least a start, and more than my country is willing to do so far. They are still calling sightings "mass hysteria" "misidentified aircraft" and "swamp gas".

    Oh, and one more thing. Please keep your cameras and video handy, and look up at the sky more. If you see something, put your camera on a solid surface, zoom in, and record it. Then post it immediately on YouTube, Google Video, or other real time International website. Make copies and give them to news agencies. Make yourself available for interviews. DO NOT embellish anything. DO NOT make or post anything fake. There are plenty of real events without giving the debunkers something to go "ah, ha!" over. My own experience happened in 1961, and I didn't get it on film, but I never go anywhere without a camera now. Even a cell phone can capture some of the daylight craft, as happened in India recently. If you are in an area which has had sightings, try using the night vision setting. Often it captures types unseen by the naked eye. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to share my views. Sorry for taking up so much space.

  107. For Full Disclosure

    For Anonymous Coward

    I looked this up for you from the Liverpool Echo you mentioned:


    Even though I'm a continent away, I can instantly access old stories, etc. Do some research and get some answers about questions you may have had festering for years...

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