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Witness says space tourism rocket exploded

1 year 11 months 3 weeks ago October 31, 2014 Oct 31, 2014 Friday, October 31 2014 October 31, 2014 2:47 PM in News
Source: Associated Press

MOJAVE, Calif. - The wreckage of the Virgin Galactic space tourism rocket known as "SpaceShip Two" is scattered in Southern California's Mojave Desert, after an explosion during a test flight.

Authorities say one person onboard was killed, and another was seriously injured. A Highway Patrol officer says one person parachuted out of the craft.

A photographer who witnessed the crash says the aircraft exploded after a plane designed to take it to a higher altitude released it, and the craft ignited its rocket motor.

SpaceShip Two is typically flown by two pilots. It was designed to provide a sub-orbital thrill ride into space before it returns to Earth as a glider.

The company isn't saying what happened, other than that it is working with authorities to determine the cause of the accident.

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