Amazon.com Founder Breaks Silence About Private Spaceship Crash
Amazon.com Founder Jeff Bezos suffered a setback to his ambition to develop a robust private spaceflight business when an unmanned spacecraft developed by his company Blue Origin was destroyed on Aug. 24 shortly after takeoff in West Texas, the Wall Street Journal reports.
Locals described an immense and terrible explosion reminiscent of the 1986 Challenger disaster, according to a source on the ground in Van Horn, Texas, near the craft’s top secret launch site, Forbes reports.
The Forbes source described what happened on Aug. 24:
“Rumor has it that it just blew up, but we don’t have anything official,” a senior Culberson County, Texas civil servant told Forbes. “Blue Origin’s facility is remote — it’s about 30 or 4o miles from Van Horn.”“People in town saw it and reported it, and posted it on Facebook,” added the official, who asked to remain anonymous for fear of repercussions. “One said it was just like the Challenger: an explosion, then a stream of smoke in the sky. They won’t tell us anything officially. This private space industry is so competitive and secretive.”