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Representative Mike Coffman

Representing the 6th District of COLORADO

3 Colorado Congressmen pen letter asking for more oversight of SpaceX launches after rocket failures

Oct 3, 2016
In The News

DENVER – Three of Colorado’s U.S. representatives want more oversight into investigations regarding two SpaceX failed launches that ended in the company’s rockets exploding.

Colorado Republican Reps. Mike Coffman, Doug Lamborn and Scott Tipton all signed off on the letter, penned by Coffman, that was sent to the heads of NASA, the Air Force and FAA on Sept. 29.

The letter was also signed by seven other Congressmen. It expresses concern over the Air Force’s initial certification of the Falcon 9 rockets, saying the review “appears to have fallen short of ensuring reliable assured U.S. access to space for our most important payloads.”

The letter also said NASA and the FAA’s granting of investigatory oversight of the explosions to SpaceX “raises serious concerns” after the second rocket exploded Sept. 1.

The letter calls for NASA and the Air Force to take over the investigation “to ensure that proper investigative engineering rigor is applied and that the outcomes are sufficient to prevent NASA and military launch mishaps in the future.”

The letter then goes on to ask specific questions to all three agencies over how further oversight would and could be handled.

SpaceX has flown nine missions to the International Space Station and is under several government contracts to resupply ISS. The contracting of rockets came after cuts over the past 20 years to NASA’s budget.