Virgin Galactic, which had been operating as an “essential business” at its manufacturing and development facilities in California, was expected to conduct its first-ever test flight at its New Mexico spaceport. That’s the location that Galactic hopes wealthy thrill seekers will flock to before they board one of the companies rocket-powered planes for a brief trip to the edge of space.
That test flight was expected to take off this week, but the company said in a statement they had consulted with New Mexico officials and decided to reschedule the flight. There is no new predicted test flight date in place.
Virgin Galactic’s statement also said the company plans to minimize its operations in New Mexico.
The United States overall is experience a surge in Covid-19 infections, making virtually the entire country a hotspot for the virus. US Surgeon General Jerome Adams said all Americans must wear masks and double down on safety precautions, as the next few months are expected to be the worst of the pandemic.
Nationwide, more than 11 million people in the US have been infected with coronavirus, and more than 246,000 have died, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
Investors appeared to be displeased by Virgin Galactic’s decision to follow state health official’s advice. The company’s stock price plunged 6% during trading hours on Monday.