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Virgin Galactic Crash Highlights Risks of Commercial Space Travel

November 20, 2014

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Airplanes are capable of taking us nearly anywhere we want to go on Earth. But soon, you may be able to travel beyond our planet. One company is working to develop an aircraft capable of flying in outer space. But the new technology is facing some public scrutiny after a crash during a test flight raised questions about the risks of commercial aviation accidents in private space travel.

According to CBS News, Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShip Two was reentering the Earth’s atmosphere after a test flight when the vessel suddenly broke apart and crashed. The impact claimed the life of one pilot and left another seriously injured.

An investigation into the crash revealed the accident occurred because the flaps on the aircraft’s tail had been raised too soon. This is a common practice in aviation that’s used to slow an aircraft for landing. However, raising the flaps at the speed of sound was more than the equipment was capable of handling and should have been done once the aircraft had reached a slower speed.

The aviation accident attorneys with Nurenberg, Paris, Heller & McCarthy have a firm understanding of aviation safety and say the crash highlights the need for further testing and safety measures before passengers should be allowed to travel to space.

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