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Decision Looms For Space Station Crew

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(Source: NASA)  The International Space Station is featured in this image photographed by an STS-133 crew member on space shuttle Discovery.

(Source: NASA) The International Space Station is featured in this image photographed by an STS-133 crew member on space shuttle Discovery.

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CAPE CANEVERAL, Fla. (CBSMiami.com) – The astronauts aboard the International Space Station remain in limbo as ground teams try to figure out what to do if the ISS needs to be evacuated.

A Russian rocket designed to carry people or supplies to the space station crashed into Siberia two months ago. As a result, supplies to the station have been delayed until November at the earliest.

Russian engineers haven’t diagnosed what caused the first rocket’s failure and until then, all Soyuz launches are stopped.

A new crew was supposed to be launched in September, but that mission has been delayed until the Soyuz rockets are cleared again.

The United States doesn’t have the ability to launch a rescue crew after the space shuttle program was ended by then-President George W. Bush.

In the event the ISS is abandoned, the current crew said they will leave the space station in the best possible condition. No decision on abandoning the ISS will be made until later this year.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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