PETALING JAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) – A huge piece of space junk – apparently from the Chinese Long March rocket has crashed down to earth – with its fiery re-entry spotted by many over Sarawak skies.

The 22.5 tonne core stage of the Long March 5B rocket re-entered Earth’s atmosphere over the Indian Ocean at approximately 12.45 am on Sunday (July 31), according to US space agency National Aeronautics and Space Administration (Nasa).

“#USSPACECOM can confirm the People’s Republic of China (PRC) Long March 5B (CZ-5B) re-entered over the Indian Ocean at approx 10:45 am MDT on 7/30. We refer you to the #PRC for further details on the reentry’s technical aspects such as potential debris dispersal+ impact location,” tweeted the US Space Command on Sunday.

The dramatic event was spotted by many people in Sarawak, Malaysia, with videos being uploaded to social media by users from Sibu, Bintulu, Kuching and more.

Many did not realise what they were witnessing, with some even labelling it a “meteorite”.

“Meteor spotted in kuching! #jalanbako 31/7/2022,” said Nazri Sulaiman (@nazriacai) on Twitter, although he later corrected himself to say that it was the remains of the Long March rocket.

“Kuching Sarawak.. meteor or apa?” tweeted hanifDaslepzz (@hanifDaslepzz).

Hanif also stated later that it was the Long March rocket and said that an “explosion” was heard over Kuching.

“There is a long streak of clouds … the people of Kuching have reported hearing the explosion an hour ago,” he tweeted.