The media is bursting with scare stories over asteroid 1999-FN53. It’s a kilometer wide and it’s going to make a close pass on Thursday at .68 astronomical units (AU). Will it strike Earth? Highly unlikely, NASA says. Its high speed of 30,000 mph means that it should be easily propelled past us without slowing down. If it did, it would essentially destroy civilization, leading to the death of at least a third of mankind.
It will not impact Earth on its initial pass, but only in the extremely unlikely event that it was caught by our planet’s gravity and began to orbit us. If that happened, it would eventually strike the planet. It is approximately twice the size of Mt. Everest and a strike would have devastating results.