SpaceX rocket launch causes concern across Southern California

PHOTO: Leandro Perez tweeted this photo on Dec. 22, 2017 from Disney California Adventure Park, "SpaceX launches the Falcon 9 rocket over us at Disneyland!"PlayTwitter/@leandro_perez
WATCH SpaceX rocket launch sparks reports of strange light

Let it not be said Elon Musk doesn't know how to grab people's attention.

The SpaceX founder captured much of the Southwest portion of the country's attention by accident on Friday night when his company launched its Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in Lompoc, California.

The rocket was carrying 10 low-orbit satellites from Iridium Communications. The launch went exactly as planned.

The contrail from a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket is seen from Burbank, Calif., more than 100 miles southeast from its launch site in Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., on Friday, Dec. 22, 2017.AP Photo/Jimmy Golen
The contrail from a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket is seen from Burbank, Calif., more than 100 miles southeast from its launch site in Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., on Friday, Dec. 22, 2017.

Well, except for all the fears of an alien invasion.

Hundreds of people in Southern California called authorities in fear of what the bright, white streak and expanding cloud in the sky could be. The Los Angeles Fire Department went as far as to warn, "mysterious light in the sky is reported to be as a result of Vandenburg Air Force Base launching rocket to put satellite into space."

Musk joked about the UFO fears on Twitter, reveling in the chatter.

Of course, he also took the opportunity to promote his next launch, because what kind of billionaire businessman would he be otherwise.

But more than stoking fears, the launch gave people a chance to fill up their Instagram, Facebook and Twitter accounts.

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