It appears that there is already a calculated ballpark for meteor fatalities, but what about other factors such as space trash, comets, and other miscellaneous items in space?

Is it possible to obtain a ballpark estimate?

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    $\begingroup$ If you trip and fall, the probability of Earth hitting you is close to 1. (I happen to know from personal experience that being hit by a planet can cause substantial damage.) $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 28, 2015 at 19:15
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    $\begingroup$ @KeithThompson unless you were a few of the Apollo astronauts (cf youtu.be/NmpNgvVOZQ4). $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Commented Jan 16, 2017 at 6:46
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    $\begingroup$ @KeithThompson but if you're distracted, and miss... $\endgroup$
    – James K
    Commented Jan 16, 2017 at 21:25

1 Answer 1


Comets are part of the meteor calculation.

Space junk is a minor concern. Most satellite and rocket bodies are fairly flimsy and are destroyed by the atmosphere. Sometimes chunks do come down. But by the time they reach Earth they are not falling fast enough to form a significant crater.

However being directly hit could be fatal.

According to Mark Matney, a scientist in the Orbital Debris Program Office at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, the odds that any of the 7 billion people on Earth will be struck by a piece of the soon-to-fall satellite is 1 in 3,200. "The odds that you will be hit are 1 in several trillion

In '97 a piece of debris from a Delta rocket hit Lottie Williams in Tulsa. It caused no significant injury. http://www.livescience.com/33511-falling-nasa-satellite-uars-risk.html


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