Lawsuit Filed Over Injuries Suffered at "Large and Dangerous" Rocket Festival

A lawsuit against the Tripoli Rocketry Association, the Rocket Organization of California, and Tripoli San Diego has been filed by Kairee Goodin, who claims she suffered first and second-degree burns to approximately five percent of her body, as well as lacerations to her thighs and legs as the result of standing too close to the launch of a 300-pound, 18-foot-tall model rocket.

While attending the annual “Large and Dangerous Rocket Ships” event in California’s Mojave Desert outside Barstow in June 2010, which, according to her complaint, is a festival dedicated to the “preparation, launching and recovery of hundreds of high-powered amateur rockets,” Goodin rode on the back of her friend Graham Orr’s ATV to a spot 30 feet from the launch site of the rocket. Orr is not named as a defendant.

When the rocket, a replica of NASA’s Delta 2 space shuttle, was launched, “the blast from the heated chemicals and/or gases of the high-power amateur rocket, along with the debris from the disintegrating rocket caused plaintiff Kairee Goodin to suffer numerous injuries.”

Goodin says it took 15 minutes for her to be transported to what she refers to as the event’s “woefully inadequate first aid station.” Once there, onlookers descended on the scene to gawk and shoot photos as her clothes “were stripped off and/or cut away to assess and treat her burns,” as “Plaintiff Kairee Goodin stood humiliated in nothing but her undergarments.”

Goodin’s claim states that inadequate signs and barriers were placed around the launch site to deter her from being in an inappropriate position during the launch. She is seeking damages “for strict liability, negligence and negligent and intentional infliction of emotional distress,” the Courthouse News Service reports.

More like this:

Comments

I've been to Launches and I'll tell you one thing. There ARE notices all over saying not to cross lines and also your own responsibility,. Should you attend a launch it is YOUR OWN RESPONSIBILITY and not of them.

Her "LOLSuit" < --- term for laughing out loud out of court will never come to pass. All sites clearly states you go at your own risk. One of the rockets could come off and veer toward you and you could get hurt that way too. Accidents happen, which is with all sports.

Looking for a quick buck, woman? I don't think so. I hope the judge laughs you out of court and I hope ROC/NAR/Tripoli counter-sue you for being an idiot.

I can tell you definitively that anyone involved with "an 18' 300 pound rocket" would not allow anyone within at least 500 feet of it, that includes the owner of the rocket, the club, and the individuals responsible for the range safety. I've been to Lucerne Valley several times, and I can tell you that they won't even allow people out in the open area for the little Estes rockets, much less anything this big. There are VERY STRICT safety procedures for these launches, and everyone there takes them extremely seriously. Everyone there, including spectators, is required to sign a waiver that states that they understand what's going on and take responsibility for their own actions.

In order to be able to simply buy the rocket motors for a rocket this large, you have to go through a three-stage certification process that basically proves that you not only know the safety procedures involved but that you have a fairly sophisticated level of engineering expertise as well. The complaint makes it sound like these are a bunch of drunkards out to have fun watching fireworks... nothing could be further from the truth.

Hookay, but is this a totally baseless claim? I doubt it. Too many of these loosey-goosey things like truck races, Burning Man, and a bunch of other stuff are part of the public domain today. Since I have no first-hand contact with this, It is hard to say for sure that these rocket launches are handled with max safety, or are not. But whenever you get spectators out at these events, someone ends up hurt or killed. And then, nobody can understand how it happened.

You can not list a rocket lunch with Burning man(where everyone is high on drugs) and truck races. For your information rocket launches are handled with precision and signs posted all over the place. If she was only 30ft. away then is her own idiotic fault. If a rocket weighing 300lbs. is being launched then she should have known the rules of safe distance. That is why we have a certification process. Yes this is baseless, and should never have been filed to begin with. Next time you comment on something understand the subject matter first @ Visduh.

"A lawsuit against the Tripoli Rocketry Association, the Rocket Organization of California, and Tripoli San Diego has been filed by Kairee Goodin, who claims she suffered first and second-degree burns to approximately five percent of her body, as well as lacerations to her thighs and legs as the result of standing too close to the launch of a 300-pound, 18-foot-tall model rocket"...

Kairee,your an idiot. You must not be certified if you were only 30ft. away...

This poor woman. Looks like a more compassionate point of view needs to be thrown in the mix! I'm sure that this rocket organization required permits, regulations and safety protocol etc. to set up their show. It appears they weren't doing their part by properly keeping bystanders out of the way! I'd imagine its the launchers responsibility to clear the area before pulling the trigger on something so big and dangerous. I don't know much about these rocket shows because I've never been to one. I've been to some demolition derbies... they wouldn't start the race if someone were sitting on the track! If there are strict safety procedures, why weren't they being followed? On the other hand, if that 30 ft distance was outside of the safety zone then it seems like the associations saftey managers miscalculated. I bet those rocket engineers didn't mind one bit about seeing her strip down to her skivvies! I don't know, it sounds like this rocket association should work out some kinks in their regulations and saftey protocols and probably pay the woman for her rehab and a good dermatologist! Some of my patients burn scars have never fully healed. I'm no lawyer, but it sounds like she's got a pretty dangerous case. Good luck to miss Kairee if you read this, and to everybody else, stay away from the Tripoli Rockets! :) . - bets

A casual person does not just walk out 1500ft to a 300lb.rocket. She went out there prepped the rocket and then rode a 4 wheeler and stopped to watch the launch at 30ft. away. She knew the rules and decided she knew better bottom line. Now she wants to sue. She is only looking for money...

"and to everybody else, stay away from the Tripoli Rockets!"

There are two Rocketry Organizations "TRA and NAR" You have to be certified by either one or both. There are 3 levels of certification and so, if you are launching a 300lb. rocket you obviously have to be level 3. Level 3 is the mastery level,you don't just get it,

She knew the rules,she broke them. Saying " stay away from the Tripoli Rockets!" Is like saying don't cross the street in front of a car... Yes it is the same thing.

She has an "Ambulance Chasing Attorney" who wants to get millions and it is never going to happen.

Oh deary. It seems like you were there! For those who don't know, 5% burns is comparable to having your entire forearm from elbow to fingertips burned and permanently scarred. A reminder for life. If she wasn't already embarrassed enough stripping in front of all those engineers then I'm sure the large area of her thighs will be a painful reminder for life. I hope she has the courage to get in a bathing suit again. There is no amount of money I would take to suffer a permanent scar like that. Especially in today's image oriented society. Lighten up a little bit and feel for the poor woman. Its not like its impacting you! I'm sure those engineers were insured for something like this and they should pay up for being negligible to safety of their crowd. - b

Can Kairee Goodin and her lawyers spell P-E-R-J-U-R-Y? I WAS THERE and read the lawsuit and know the boyfriend Graham Orr who is and has been a member of Tripoli for years and launched his own loser rockets! Oh, it's an unverified complaint not signed by attorneys or plaintiff as true and correct because it's full of lies! First of all TRA has a flawless safety record. See Discovery Channel coverage of the "large and dangerous rocket ships" launches. You have to sign waivers of spelled out risks and to keep out of launch areas, in plain English. They went to great lengths to go miles out in the Mojave Desert, get into the event, and drive up close to the 3 story high rocket! As soon as they saw it 30 ft away they should have moved farther away but chose to sit there. Orr went even closer! She got fast first aid and medical attention for minor injuries. First and second degree burns are redness and blisters, not deep burns. Kairee and Graham caused her scratches. I'm volunteering to be a defense witness and live close to court! Shame on them for wasting taxpayer money and court resources. Sue back Tripoli! Name Orr and unscrupulous lawyers STUART R. FRAENKEL (State Bar # 173991) and ANDREW L. CIGANEK (State Bar # 266701)

Betsy, as a point of fact, the organizers cannot stop anybody from going anywhere or prohibit bystanders from going up to the rockets. They don't have any legal right to blockade people from the public property. TRA had many warning signs, the driver of the ATV Kairee rode in was himself a rocketeer and knew the risks. TRA has a lengthy process for approving which rockets and participants demonstrate reasonable safety to be permitted to launch. Nothing's perfect. Accidents happen.

People choose to do stupid things on public property all the time including on freeways, beaches and the desert. Kairee and Graham have the right to step in front of a moving train if they choose to. Let's be reasonable. Nobody else has ever done what Kairee Goodin and Graham Orr did at a LADRS launch during the decades they've been safely held. They're exciting!

It is unfortunate whenever someone has an injury, even minor like here, but attendance is by choice and at the informed risk of the spectators and participants. They're gold brickers in my book. Period.

Visduh, google and read the Discovery Channel programs covering LADRS launches. Inform yourself. Tripoli is an international highly respected association. There are no other personal injury claims against them which is rather astonishing. You're safer there than on the California freeways.

Betsy, what rehab and dermatologists? The complaint doesn't list or mention them. She probably needed ice, tylenol, first aid and mental health attention which could well have been pre-existing. The lawsuit alleges her "self-diagnosed panic attacks".. Puh leeeeze.

Log in to comment

Skip Ad