Astronauts at the International Space Station had to rush into the two docked Soyuz spaceships as space debris nearly hit their homebase, passing just 250m from it. In space, that’s a pretty close call.
While this has not been the first time that the evacuation protocol has been activated – it happened once in 2009 – it sure was a tense moment because the space debris was not detected until it was too late to move the station to a completely safe spot. According to an unidentified Russian source, “the space junk was detected too late for a ducking manoeuvre”.
Russian and NASA officials have stated that this was “not an emergency situation”, and the astronauts went back to their normal day after spending 30 minutes inside the Soyuz capsules.
I have said it before, and I will say it again here: These guys need lasers or a better detection system. It would be too bad to lose the station – not to talk about lives – after so many years and money spent in this marvel. [AFP and Fox News]