Liability in the event of a disaster

If you haven’t heard yet about the tragic deaths of five people in a submarine visiting wreckage of the Titanic this week, you are in the minority. Anytime humans set out on big adventures, there are risks. Space, like oceans are risky.

That’s why in 2021 the New Mexico Legislature placed a $1 million cap on legal liability provided to Virgin Galactic. With Virgin Galactic set to begin paid space tourism flights as soon as Tuesday, June 27, it is worth at least asking whether New Mexico taxpayers (the State) might be on the hook or at least targeted by some enterprising lawyer in the case of a future mishap at the facility.

No one wants tragedies to happen, but the Legislature clearly was thinking of liability when it passed this cap in 2021. We are concerned they may not have protected New Mexicans as effectively as they protected Virgin Galactic.

Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo crashes, killing co-pilot | CBC News