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Survivor of 1983 space launch emergency comments on Soyuz MS-10 incident

October 11, 19:05 UTC+3 BAIKONUR

On September 26, 1983 a Soyuz-U rocket carrying the Soyuz T-10-1 spacecraft caught fire at the launch pad 48 seconds before blastoff

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BAIKONUR, October 11. /TASS/. The crew of the manned Soyuz MS-10 spacecraft is likely to recover from the effects of the failed launch of the Soyuz-FG rocket before long, because the rescue system performed well, cosmonaut Vladimir Titov, who in 1983 went through a similar emergency, told TASS in an interview.

On September 26, 1983 a Soyuz-U rocket carrying the Soyuz T-10-1 spacecraft caught fire at the launch pad 48 seconds before blastoff. The emergency rescue system took the descent capsule with the crew to safety away from the endangered area. The crew experienced g-forces ranging 14gs-18gs. The falling debris caused no casualties.

"It’s a pretty bad situation, no denying that. We had an experience like this. A very unpleasant one. As for the incident, the probe will identify the causes. The rocket is well-tested and well-known," Titov said.

One week enough for crew to recover

Titov believes the crew will need a week to recover.

"They will be examined by specialists. I’m certain everything will be normal. As for the spacecraft and the launch vehicle, the probe may last longer. Everything will depend on how fast the situation is analyzed. There can be no procrastination. The station is in orbit and operational. Mothballing and leaving it would be very undesirable," Titov said.

Launch failure

A Soyuz-FG launch vehicle carrying the Soyuz MS-10 spacecraft on Thursday blasted off from Baikonur at 11:40 Moscow time. It was to take to the ISS a crew of two - Roscosmos’s Alexei Ovchinin and NASA’s Nick Hague. The launch vehicle failed, sending the descent capsule into ballistic reentry.

The capsule landed safely in Kazakhstan. After evacuation and medical examination the crew was brought to an airdrome near Baikonur. Before being flown to Moscow on Friday morning Ovchinin and Hague will stay at a local medical center. This is the first-ever emergency involving this type of rocket over 35 years.

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