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No emergency on ISS: NASA explains livestream mix-up

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No emergency on ISS: NASA explains livestream mix-up
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NASA has made it clear that the concerns regarding the medical drill on board the International Space Station created a sense of emergency, explaining that the medical drill was accidentally live-streamed on social media.

On Wednesday, at 5:30 PM CDT, the NASA ISS live stream abruptly displayed a message indicating a temporary interruption, promising to resume once the connection was reestablished.

Shortly thereafter, audio surfaced of a communication seemingly involving ISS crew members dealing with a serious medical situation. This included instructions for treating a "commander" suffering from decompression sickness, a condition that can occur when the body experiences a rapid decrease in pressure.

The alarming scenario described in the audio, which included checking the commander's pulse and preparing for hyperbaric treatment, led many viewers to believe an actual emergency was unfolding. The situation's gravity was underscored by a flight surgeon, purportedly from SpaceX’s mission control centre, expressing concern about the commander's prognosis.

This incident garnered attention on social media, with many expressing alarm and confusion. Some prominent figures in the space community found the broadcast particularly unsettling, although there were also immediate speculations that it might be a drill rather than a real emergency.

NASA promptly issued a statement to clarify the situation. They confirmed that the audio had been inadvertently routed from a simulation exercise, not an actual emergency. NASA explained that such drills are a routine part of their operations, designed to prepare both crew members and ground teams for various potential scenarios in space.

SpaceX also confirmed that the broadcasted conversation was part of a test taking place in California. They assured the public that all involved personnel were safe and healthy. Further, NASA noted that the ISS crew was in their designated sleep period during the time of the broadcasted drill, and there was no real medical emergency.

NASA reiterated that the ISS crew remained healthy and safe, and reassured that the next scheduled activities, including a planned spacewalk, would proceed as planned. This event highlights the challenges of maintaining transparent communication in space operations, especially when routine training exercises can be mistaken for actual emergencies.

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TAGS:NASAInternational Space StationISS
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