'Mad' Mike Hughes forced to delay home-made rocket launch

27 November 2017, 09:16

A limousine driver turned self-taught scientist has had to delay plans to launch himself over a California ghost town in a home-made rocket.

Mike Hughes, who calls himself Mad Mike Hughes and says he doesn't believe in science, has spent years building his own steam-powered rocket in his garage to prove the Earth is flat.

The 61-year-old saved money from his $15-an-hour driving job and has spent $20,000 (£15,000) on the project.

His launch had been scheduled for Saturday in Amboy, a ghost town in the Mojave Desert and along historic Route 66.

But US Bureau of Land Management (BLM) reportedly stopped him from using public land after reading about his plans in the media.

They told him "they would not allow me to do the event ... at least not at that location," Mr Hughes said on YouTube.

Also, the rocket launcher broke down, he said.

The ghost town of Amboy has a population of four and is said to have been the inspiration for Disney's fictional town of Radiator Springs in Cars.

Hughes claims he got permission from Amboy's owner Albert Okura, who purchased the rights to the town in 2005, to launch the rocket.

But a BLM spokeswoman, Samantha Storms, told the Washington Post: "Someone from our local office reached out to him after seeing some of these news articles [about the launch], because that was news to them."

Mr Hughes featured on several publications after he spoke to Associated Press.

His launch is currently rescheduled for Tuesday.