Though many people may be quick to dismiss a UFO sighting as nothing but a myth, recently discovered documents show that at one point the Canadian government took them seriously.

Science writer Chris Rutkowski, an alumnus of the University of Manitoba, discovered documents in the National Archives dating back to 1967 that show UFO sighting were once investigated.

“They investigated quite significantly a number of cases and a few in particular were ones that they described as very unexplained or of especially interest,” he said.

Rutkowski said the reports were from qualified personnel and were investigated by other qualified personnel.  At times, post-secondary institutions like U of M helped out with the analysis.

The briefing shows there was a jump in reports from about 40 to 167 between 1966 and 1967.

In many instances, no explanation was found for the sightings.

“In some cases there were very reputable observers, some of these were radar operators and yet they had experienced and seen something that couldn’t be explained. To me that says there’s a real phenomenon that needs investigation.”