Mar 30, 2008

Space Agency sued for Fallen Rocket part

When rocket falls in backyard! A shepherd is suing the Russian space agency after a 10-foot-long chunk of metal from a rocket nearly hit his outdoor toilet. Boris Urmatov, who lives in a small village in Russia's Altai region, is seeking a million roubles (£21,200) damages from the Roskosmos agency.

"Something woke him up in the night, like something exploded. Since he's visually handicapped he didn't notice the fallen rocket parts. In the morning in front of the shepherd hut he saw this enormous metal casing, as smooth as an egg," said his sister Marina.

The village Kyrlyk, lies underneath the flight path of rockets taking off from the Baikonur launchpad in Kazakhstan. So, authorities has designated it as a special zones where people may not go during the launches.

Space agency Roskosmos said it warned residents when a launch was scheduled, and in a history stretching back over 50 years and 400 rockets, only a few rocket parts had fallen outside the designated areas.

"Technologically speaking, these parts are supposed to fall off during a launch. They fly, they fall, they fly, they fall. It's how they work. If a court determines that, yes, those are rocket parts, they fell on his land, then for sure he will be compensated. No question about it," said Alexander Vorobyov, a spokesman for Roskosmos. Link


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