Asteroid to whiz by Earth just before Election Day

Posted at 7:39 PM, Aug 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-22 22:39:36-04

(KGTV) — An asteroid discovered by Palomar Observatory is set to make a pass by Earth the day before the 2020 U.S. election.

The asteroid, dubbed "2018 VP1," was first noticed by the San Diego County observatory on Nov. 3, 2018, according to data from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. It's estimated to measure about 5.9 and 12.8 feet in diameter.

NASA is currently forecasting that the space rock will come between 4,800 to 260,000 miles of our atmosphere on Nov. 2. For comparison, the International Space Station is about 254 miles above the planet.

The probability of 2018 VP1 impacting our planet is 1 in 240 or about 0.41%.

NASA keeps a running list of potential asteroid threats to the planet. Currently, there are no immediate threats listed on the agency's website. The largest known risk is a 4,200-foot wide asteroid with a 0.012% chance of hitting Earth in 860 years.