Disabled spy satellite falling from orbit

A large US spy satellite has lost power and could hit the Earth in late February or early March, government officials said. The satellite, which no longer can be controlled, could contain hazardous materials, and it is unknown where on the planet it might come down, they said. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity Saturday because the information is classified as secret. It was not clear how long ago the satellite lost power, or under what circumstances. "Appropriate government agencies are monitoring the situation," said Gordon Johndroe, a spokesman for the National Security Council, when asked about the situation after it was disclosed by other officials. "Numerous satellites over the years have come out of orbit and fallen harmlessly. We are looking at potential options to mitigate any possible damage this satellite may cause." He would not comment on whether it is possible for the satellite to perhaps be shot down by a missile. He said it would be inappropriate to discuss any specifics at this time. A senior government official said that lawmakers and other nations are being kept apprised of the situation.