It may sound like I’m blowing my own horn here, but this would never work on me. I simply know too much about satellites, the actual size and shape of the UARS satellite, and what happens when they de-orbit. Whatever parts survived the re-entry splashed down somewhere in the Pacific, sinking quietly into oblivion. You have to remember a few things about orbiting machines: In orbit, they are moving at 17,500 miles per hour. That’s a lot of kinetic energy that has to go somewhere, and that’s why we see those huge fireballs if we’re lucky enough to see something hit the upper atmosphere. Also, 3/4’s of the planet’s surface is ocean, so the odds are pretty good it’s going to splashdown, not crashdown.
The funny part of the video, for me, is that the ‘victims’ of this prank have no clue that what they’re seeing cannot happen. A little science education would have told them immediately they were the victims of a prank. But it makes for good television!