“One person died and another was seriously injured as a result of Friday's incident involving Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo,“ California Highway Patrol Officer Jesse Borne said, as quoted by CNN.
Earlier on Friday the spaceplane manufacturer Virgin Galactic said on its official Tweeter account that SpaceShipTwo has crashed due to an in-flight anomaly.
“During the test, the vehicle suffered a serious anomaly, resulting in the loss of SpaceShipTwo,” Virgin Galactic said, adding that the company is now working closely with relevant authorities in order to determine the cause of the accident.
The SpaceShipTwo is a suborbital, air-launched spaceplane, designed for the purposes of space tourism.
The spaceplane’s crash is the second major accident with space vehicles to happen in the United States this week.
On Tuesday, the Antares spacecraft that was carrying cargo to the ISS crashed only six seconds after launching from the Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.
A special commission has been set up in the United States to investigate the cause of the explosion, according to NASA.