Wife of a SpaceX employee injured to a coma filed a lawsuit against Elon Musk

A wife of an employee who was seriously injured during a failed rocket engine test that led to his coma has filed a lawsuit against SpaceX for negligence. This is reported by Reuters. The accident occurred due to poor safety conditions at the production site of the company, which is headed by Elon Musk.

In 2022, SpaceX had an occupational injury rate six times higher than the average in the space industry. Photo: REUTERS

Francisco Cabada, a SpaceX employee, was one of more than 600 workers injured, as revealed by a Reuters investigation last November. He was injured in January 2022 during tests when a fragment from the V2 Raptor engine broke off under pressure and hit him in the head, fracturing his skull. After this incident, Cabada remains in a coma for two years.

The lawsuit was filed by his wife, Ydy Cabada, in a Los Angeles court last week. She expressed a desire to get a response from Elon Musk, noting that employees for the company are probably “just disposable.” 

SpaceX workers pose in front of a rocket that crashed during an unmanned test. Photo: REUTERS

According to anonymous SpaceX workers, the part the Cabada suffered from was defective, and it was not fixed before the next test. The investigation also indicated that top managers in Hawthorne, California, where the injury occurred, reported about the danger due to the hasty development of the engine. 

Serious safety issues at SpaceX and Tesla

Numerous injuries indicate systemic problems in the workplace, which have already led to the death of one employee. SpaceX has tried to hide this from the public. The investigation also indicated that many people suffered injuries of varying severity, indicating serious safety problems.

Employees, both former and current, point to the excessive rigidity of deadlines set by Musk, neglecting workplace safety. SpaceX adheres to the rule of “moving fast and breaking things,” but this leads not only to success, but also to injuries and even death of workers.

This is not the first time that a company led by Musk has faced security problems. Tesla, the billionaire’s other company, also had problems with workplace injuries. For years, electric car manufacturer Tesla has been criticized because of the terrible working conditions at its factories, where workers are literally forced to sleep on the assembly line. Thus, fatigue and neglect of safety lead to serious injuries at work.

It is still unknown the result of the lawsuit. But it seems that as long as rapid enrichment is the main thing in these companies, employees will continue to pay a high price for SpaceX’s achievements with their health or even their lives.

Earlier, we reported on why the second flight of Starship ended in an explosion.

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