Critics Accuse Virgin Galactic of Negligence: 'Russian Roulette'

Critics Accuse Virgin Galactic of Negligence: 'Russian Roulette'

Entrepreneur Richard Branson is fighting off angry allegations of mismanagement after Friday’s crash of a Virgin Galactic rocket in California’s Mojave Desert, with critics saying that safety problems have long been an issue. The Daily Mail reports that there were frequent warnings about safety, which the company ignored in the rush to prepare for a scheduled launch of the new $250,000-per-seat space tourism venture in 2015.

Both pilots ejected, but one pilot, Michael Alsbury, was killed in the crash, apparently when his parachute failed to deploy. The other, Peter Siebold, a graduate of California’s Davis Senior High School, was seriously injured.

The Daily Mail reports that three of Virgin Galactic’s senior engineers recently quit. One critic called the project “Russian roulette.” 

The scheduled 2015 flight was anticipated to have included many prominent celebrities.

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