Dutch Astronaut André Kuipers Reveals He Accidentally Called 911 From Space

Christopher Davidson
January 7, 2019

The comedy of errors began when he mistakenly omitted one of the four digits.

Astronaut Andre Kuipers was trying to make a call while on a space mission in the International Space Station and missed a number, accidentally dialing 911, prompting a security team to the room where the call was made.

According to Kuipers, it's actually not that hard to contact friends on the Earth from space.

That's even easier to explain.

The Dutch astronaut has been in two space missions for over 200 days but didn't think that his mistake would cause so much panic or chaos.

"I made a mistake", said Kuipers, "and the next day I received an email message: did you call 911?"

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The 60 year-old astronaut said that he was attempting to make contact with NASA at the space center in Houston, but due to the zero gravity environment he must have slipped up and misdialed the numbers.

"I was a little disappointed that they had not come up", joked Kuipers.

Kuipers said it's surprisingly easy to contact Earth from space, and that astronauts can use terrestrial phones via satellites about 70% of the time. Otherwise, they'll just have to hear about him accidentally prank-calling 911 from space, and wait to hear a somewhat delayed version of that story when he actually does dial the right number.

He did say, however, there is often a time delay that makes it hard to hold conversations with people on Earth.

This isn't the first time an astronaut has dialed the wrong number from ISS.

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