Published: 7:03 AM 1/2/2014
By Jenalyn Villamarin
In Sweden, some people have their own way of welcoming the New Year like lighting up Thai-style rice lanterns in the sky. However, the Swedish UFO experts are expecting a flow of UFO sighting reports during the start of 2014 with the appearance of the rice lanterns in the dark, particularly on New Year's Eve.
UFO Investigator Tobias Lindgren of the non-profit group UFO-Sweden claimed there are usually many reports during New Year as people mistakenly thought the flying lanterns for UFOs. "A lot of the reports during New Year are triggered by the Thai lanterns," Lindgren said to the TT news agency.
The investigator added, "Every year, I investigate between 50 and 60 sightings. I expect to have a lot to do this year too."
In the UPI report, the Swedish news agency TT reported that there will be more UFO sightings accounted as the rule allowing Swedes release hot air lanterns without permit took effect in November 2013.
The local report reads: "Since November 1, Swedes no longer need a permit to launch the hot air born lanterns into the night sky. Anyone living within 100 metres of any of the main airports, however, must warn flight control they want to send the Khom Loy lanterns skywards."
Lindgren noted he has the skill of identifying the rice lanterns from a distance. In some UFO sighting reports, his expertise has provided a sense of relief to the witnesses who spotted a flying object in the horizon.
"People think the lanterns are UFOs, but I recognize them immediately. Some people are very relieved when they find out," the UFO expert said. However, the ground staff are not the only ones on the lookout for this increasing trend.
The increasing number of suspected UFO sightings due to the rice lantern trend has kept the UFO-Sverige or UFO-Sweden organization busy during the holiday season.
The report claimed the non-profit UFO investigators have been looking into the sighting reports of unidentified flying objects since 1970 and their objective is to "turn the UFO subject into an established and respected field of research."