Balloon Leak Grounds World View KFC Publicity Stunt

World View test launch in Page, Arizona

Pima County taxpayers have once again played a part in a failed experiment after World View’s balloon sprung a leak during its recent public relations stunt involving sending a KFC sandwich into the stratosphere.

According to Geekwire.com, “World View Enterprises said its “Zinger 1” mission to keep a KFC chicken sandwich aloft in the stratosphere was terminated earlier than planned, due to a small leak in an altitude-control balloon system on its Stratollite platform. The company’s CEO, Jane Poynter, said today in a statement that the payload was brought down about 17 hours after the balloon launch on Thursday in Arizona. “Within the first few hours of flight, all system test objectives were met,” she said. Poynter added that the chicken sandwich “performed flawlessly.” World View is developing the Stratollite balloon platform as a low-cost alternative to satellites, and eventually plans to send tourists up for hours-long excursions. So tell Colonel Sanders to keep that Kentucky-colonel spacesuit handy.”

Related articles:

Pima County Leaders Went To Great Lengths To Send KFC Into Stratosphere With World View

Pima County Taxpayers Spent Over $800,000 On World View Equipment, Furnishings

Pima County World View Spending Balloons Despite Court Ruling

Taxpayers first learned of the debacle from Tucson radio show host Chris DeSimone on the Wake Up Tucson show on Wednesday morning. While the mission to send a chicken sandwich into space was supposed to create public interest, the mission was shrouded in secrecy.

The secrecy is believed to be due in part to the embarrassing allegation that Pima County taxpayers funded the company’s building and launchpad but the FAA has not approved the pad’s use. As a result, the KFC mission was launched in Page, Arizona.

According to the Verge.com, “Before last week’s launch, the balloon had only flown between six and 12 hours. World View wanted to fly the balloon for four days to test how several parts of the Stratollite — like its altitude control system, communications systems, and solar power technology — would work together over a longer period. But the systems they wanted to test weren’t what went awry — the balloon was.”

Blasting News reports that the “publicity stunt for KFC would have been the first time the Stratollight would have stayed airborne for more than twelve hours, building up to the design specifications of being able to stay up for months on end.”

27 Comments

  1. Build your launch facility on Ft. Huachuca. They have restricted airspace up to 45,000 ft. and no airways or jet routes overhead!

  2. We don’t have a District Attorney, it’s the County Attorney and right now she is keeping a low profile because there is going to be a second investigation opened in the illegal use of RICO funds by the Sheriff’s Department and possibly the County Attorney as she used RICO funds to purchase re-election trinkets last year.
    This matter needs to be looked into by the State Attorney General, but Chucky’s follies have been going on for so long I find it hard to believe the Attorney General hasn’t heard about them by now, I just fear they too have decided to turn a deaf ear into what is happening in Pima County. It seems our only chance here is to get a republican majority on the Board of Supervisors and then just maybe Chucky can be sent packing.

  3. As I posted before, where IS the District Attorney in this fiasco? Hiding under her desk, or sitting behind it with a bag on her head?

    • Unfortunately the DA has a history
      of political corruption.

      Scientists estimate that the chicken
      sandwich launched into space had an
      discernment level which approximates that
      of Pima County voters who continue to vote
      for these crooks.

  4. What’s funny is that this story is not funny.

    This is serious white collar crime perpetrated by Chucky. Pima County has money to fund their annual pension payment. Money to pay top heavy 6 figure administrators and their fringe benefits. Money to fund a fleet of new vehicles for every department including electric cars for the supes. Money to fund first class travel for every round trip they want to go on. Money to fund every tax/bond increase proposition Chucky decides he wants. Money to fund World View start up venture.

    BUT WE DON’T have money for roads? Parks? Police? Basic government services? Chucky has played every taxpayer for a fool and continues to get away with it.

    Come on Voters! Wake up to this ruse and vote these political baffoons out of office….

  5. Interesting that no one else is reporting this story!
    Keep this thread alive so the taxpayers know what’s happening with their $15,000,000 investment in “Chucks Folly”!
    P.S. I hear that other interests are looking to bid on the lease of this property to expand their operations! Gates, Raytheon, Canadair, etc.

  6. The taxpayer money for “World View” is illegal, period! The Goldwater Institute was on the job to tell us that now taxpayer monies should ever be use to private business. Yet,the folly goes on and on with no end in sight. Since the Balloon is threated to the ground in will be only a matter of time before an airplane runs into it; sorry for the souls in the airplane. 🙁

  7. Criminy! Reminds me of the word criminal! Anyway, Egads! And our neighborhood cannot get our roads re-paved but BOS can buy furniture and chicken sandwiches for World View! About repaving we just get noise about no funds available from the Huckster!

  8. I don’t think flights will be disturbed at Crop Duster International – there’s very few flights to or from anywhere to be bothered with.. most flights just jet training for ISIS pilots

    • Jet training for ISIS pilots? You sir, are despicable. The Arizona Air National Guard has a proud history of patriotic service. You can view a plaque containing the names of all the members who have died in service to our country. Yes, allied pilots are trained there, from all over the world, so we can fight together effectively AGAINST people like ISIS.

      • Oscar – Turkey is now training, or has trained many, if you haven’t noticed Turkey is about to join Iran and Russian axis – and if I’m correct we are getting our Air Force and materials out of Turkey fearing or awaiting just such an event – other nations of the middle east have been training at the base for decades – sorry to say – many will end up on the other side. It’s an odd thing radicalization isn’t it… suddenly you want to kill us – as some here in this country have. I’m quite aware of the brave and consistant efforts and service the AzNat’l Guard Fighter wing have provided to the nation when called, it’s hard to miss that Az Tail in the Photos. Despicable me… or realist me? You can put your head in the sand if you want.. but the reality is – many of these guys are going to end up on that side of the fence. Quite despicable if you ask me….

  9. Not a very good start for a company unable to send a Chicken Zinger sandwich into the stratosphere at the expense of Pima County taxpayers, thanks to Chuck and the Board of Supidvisors. How do they think they are going to send tourists into space if they can’t even send a chicken sandwich into space.

    • Maybe Chuck will volunteer to be the first human to go up just to prove what a great investment this is?

  10. Not a new fiasco for CEO Jane Poynter. Anyone remember when she was part of the Biosphere fiasco of sealing it up, and then the seal being secretly opened to provide the Biospherians with ‘essentials’ including birth control?

    It was also proof positive that man has no idea how to control the climate.

  11. Where’s the District Attorney on this fiasco? From what I’m learning, it appears some laws are being broken. Huckleberry needs to be arrested.

  12. Need to hire an Airspace and Procedures Specialist to coordinate with the FAA.
    I’m available at $100 an hour plus expenses!

  13. Last year, during my campaign, I ask Huckelberry, at a Green Valley Council meeting, how the FAA would approve flying unpowered balloons from a facility approximately 1 mile from an active commercial runway. His response – “it won’t be a problem”. This would be funny if not for the taxpayer money that has likely been wasted on World View…

  14. So, they will shut down Tucson airport when the balloon is launched, along with the DM recovery route over TUS as well as both low and high altitude airways over TUS VORTAC to launch a chicken sandwich? Ain’t gonna happen!
    Should have built the launch pad at Ryan airport.

  15. Quick….everybody in the Biosphere wants pizza delivered, …crack the seal and get the delivery man a tip. Amazing the frauds that taxpayers fall for.

  16. The secrecy is believed to be due in part to the embarrassing fact that Pima County taxpayers funded the company’s building and launchpad but the FAA has not approved the pad’s use.

    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha…. The joke is on the stupid taxpayers. I posted a couple of days ago I didn’t think that they had an FAA permit to launch near an active airport and damn, if I wasn’t right. But what the hell, that is only a little detail, right Chuck? Didn’t need that launch pad yet did they. Still no word on the auction of the building’s lease to the lowest bidder as the court required. What you worried about Chuck, think someone else will lease it and leave your precious balloon company with county bought office furniture out in the cold? Thought so.

      • :The Pima County Board of Supervisors voted 4-1 on Jan. 19 to approve an incentives agreement with World View, a commercial balloon spaceflight company, for it to build its world headquarters and first launchpad south of Tucson International Airport in the Sonoran Corridor.”

        The above is posted on the Pima County website. So although he is a registered Republican Ray Carroll has long acted like a Democrat. If you recognized him as a Dem then your party lines statement is correct.
        https://webcms.pima.gov/cms/One.aspx?portalId=169&pageId=236855

      • Afraid to burst your bubble,Pete, but the taxpayers voted for the four idiots on the BOS that voted for the Huckster’s scheme. They must love getting screwed and not even a kiss on the cheek.

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