Rocket Explodes during SpaceX testing - KXXV-TV News Channel 25 - Central Texas News and Weather for Waco, Temple, Killeen |

MCGREGOR

Rocket Explodes during SpaceX testing

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MCGREGOR -

Residents in and around McGregor are used to SpaceX testing, but they aren't used to what they saw Friday, when a rocket exploded in the sky.

The important thing is no one was injured in the explosion. However, people all over McGregor said they could see and hear when that rocket blew up.

SpaceX launched a Falcon 9 Rocket for testing on Friday. Shortly after take off, something went wrong and it blew up in midair.

Peggy Cockrum, who lives close to SpaceX saw the whole thing from home when she was outside with her family.

“In about that split second it just went boom! And it was just a big, giant fireball and you could see the debris coming out from around it and hitting the ground” says Cockrum.  “It was like you could reach up there and touch it, it was that close to where we are.”

SpaceX says the rocket detected something was wrong before it self- destructed.

Cockrum says after Friday's failed mission she doesn't feel safe living so close to SpaceX.

 “We're afraid. I mean i got the grandbabies out here you know and if that rocket, we seen it when it came up, it kind of turned sideways,” Cockrum. “What if that rocket would have turned this way? We're right here on the backside of SpaceX. I mean we're right here. Where would it have landed? In my backfield. That is scary.”

The McLennan County Sheriff's Office and McGregor Police blocked Bluebonnet Parkway after the accident and residents were turned around for a couple hours as firefighters and other crews worked on the scene.

SpaceX says they will review today's flight records to learn more about the F9R before their next test. No word on when that next test will be.

Below is SpaceX's statement:

“Earlier today, in McGregor, Texas, SpaceX conducted a test flight of a three engine version of the F9R test vehicle (successor to Grasshopper). During the flight, an anomaly was detected in the vehicle and the flight termination system automatically terminated the mission.

“Throughout the test and subsequent flight termination, the vehicle remained in the designated flight area. There were no injuries or near injuries. An FAA representative was present at all times. 

“With research and development projects, detecting vehicle anomalies during the testing is the purpose of the program. Today's test was particularly complex, pushing the limits of the vehicle further than any previous test.  As is our practice, the company will be reviewing the flight record details to learn more about the performance of the vehicle prior to our next test.

“SpaceX will provide another update when the flight data has been fully analyzed.”



A SpaceX Falcon 9 test flight was intentionally destroyed Friday afternoon after a problem was detected in the rocket and the flight was automatically terminated.   The Falcon 9 is the revolutionary reuseableX created to win space cargo contracts.
Witnesses say a few seconds after launching, the rocket turned 180 degrees and then exploded, spreading debris across a rural area and causing several small grass fires.

SpaceX released a statement saying throughout the test and subsequent flight termination the vehicle remained in the designated flight area and an FAA representative was present at all times.   There were no injuries or near injuries.

"With research and development projects, detecting vehicle anomalies during the testing is the purpose of the program.  Today's test was particularly complex, pushing the limits of the vehicle further than any previous test," the company said.  "As is our practice, the company will be reviewing the flight record details to learn more about the performance of the vehicle prior to our next test." 

Residents in that area said they heard a loud explosion that rattled homes and windows and set off car alarms.

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