Late last night some might have noticed a fun animation on the Google homepage. Thursday’s Google Doodle of a Valentine’s Day-themed Ferris Wheel had been replaced with an animated doodle of the Asteroid 2012 DA14. The second “G” in Google moved out of the way as the asteroid fell into the opening. Humorous and very cute, until overnight reports came in that a massive meteor shower in Russia had injured hundreds.
Google pulled the doodle after hearing that more than 500 people had been injured, most by broken glass.
“Out of respect for those injured in the extraordinary meteor shower in Russia earlier today, we have removed today’s doodle from the Google homepage,” a Google spokesperson told ABC News. “The doodle was created to mark Asteroid 2012 DA14 passing Earth.”
The Asteroid 2012 DA14 is expected to pass 17,200 miles from Earth at 2:25 p.m. ET today. It is flying from south to north in a path that brings it closer than the geosynchronous satellites we use for communications and many weather observations. Most scientists said the Russian impact and the passing asteroid were not related. ABC News has spoken to astronomers who said they’re pretty sure the asteroid –called 2012 DA14 – was solid, and not shedding pieces.