Unsolved - The Rain That Fell in Oakville, Washington
The substance remains unknown to this day.
Oakville, Washington, August 7, 1994. Rain isn’t uncommon in the Pacific Northwest, so when a late evening rainstorm moved in, the residents of this sleepy town settled in for a warm night's rest indoors. The few who stayed up to watch the storm felt at peace, as most Washingtonians do in the rain. But as the night went on, things took a bizarre turn. People noted that the rain became thicker looking almost gelatinous. They had seen rain of all kinds before, but none like this. And it wasn’t just a one time thing.
Over the span of three weeks this substance had fallen from the sky six times, raising more and more questions each time. On the first night of this bizarre rainfall, Officer David Lacey was on patrol. Driving through the rain wasn’t uncommon, but when the substance falling from the sky began streaking on his windshield, blocking his view, he knew something wasn’t quite right. He pulled off of the road and got out of the car. Taking precautions before touching the substance, Officer Lacey wore latex gloves and cleaned off his windshield, observing the substance's odd gelatinous form.
It wasn’t long before illness settled on the officer. The sickness was violent, bringing fever, chills, blurred vision and extreme vertigo, to name a few symptoms. Other residents claimed that they would also contract a flu-like virus, some accounts say the entire town came to a standstill due to the illness. Residents began pouring into hospital rooms, and pets began flooding veterinary offices. There were many reports of animals becoming seriously ill shortly before dying mysteriously.
After the first night of this rain, the Washington State Department of Health was on the case. One resident that was admitted to the hospital came in with samples she had collected in order to have the substance tested. Lab technicians at the hospital tested it to see if there was contamination that would explain the sudden illness onset. Lab technicians became astonished when the results came back and found there were human white blood cells as well as bacteria found in the human digestive tract.
Because of these findings, there was speculation that the substance was simply airplane waste, but in accordance with the Federal Aviation Administration, all waste from airplanes is dyed a distinguishable blue color. The substance that was falling from the sky was clear and jello-like. Other theories were that the substance was a byproduct of weapons testing in the Pacific Ocean, however Oakville is about 50 miles inland from the ocean, not to mention that there were no reports of the substance anywhere closer to the ocean. The United States Air Force admits to doing experimental testing of aircraft in the area of Oakville, but insisted that the testing they were doing had nothing to do with such a bizarre substance.
So what was it? As much as scientists and locals would like an answer - there isn’t one. There was never an answer released by health department officials regarding what exactly the substance was. The substance that fell in Oakville raised many questions about government testing in the Puget Sound as well as environmental impacts of area industry. There have been reports of similar gelatinous forms falling in other places around the world, however, none had the curiosity that this one does. The ability to make residents sick and kill animals left the residents in fear for what may come next.
Conspiracy theories have developed around the event, including one that accuses the United States military of testing their chemical warfare weapons on their own citizens. As much as people are still intrigued by it, there’s the unfortunate truth that there are no remaining samples of the substance left. All that’s left to do is wildly speculate or hope it falls again.