NASA probes ‘drug-free’ policies, safety at SpaceX, Boeing

NASA might buck Elon Musk over weed smoking video

Since the USA space shuttle program was shut down in 2011, NASA has had to rely on Russian Federation to fly astronauts to the space station, a $100 billion orbital research laboratory that flies about 250 miles (402 kilometers) above Earth.

Overall, both capsules will go through an uncrewed test and a crewed one, before being ready for their first real missions. It will also investigate Boeing, which Musk has nothing to do with. That rankled some at NASA's highest levels and prompted the agency to take a close look at the culture of the companies, the people said.

The safety review will focus on company culture in a series of hundreds of interviews, but there are also technical issues in play.

SpaceX and Boeing are the two private agencies selected under NASA's Commercial Crew Program.

United States space agency NASA said on Tuesday it would review the workplace safety culture at SpaceX and Boeing Co, as the two companies gear up to fly astronauts to the International Space Station. So far it has launched 18 times - tying its record from past year - and says it is getting close to launching NASA's astronauts.

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The unpiloted Crew Dragon flight coming up in January, known as Demo-1 on the SpaceX manifest, will launch from historic pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center.

A September podcast of SpaceX Chief Executive Elon Musk smoking weed has promoted NASA to conduct an extensive review of workplace safety at SpaceX and Boeing, two of its major commercial partners.

NASA told the Washington Post that its review of both SpaceX and Boeing, which have contracts to fly NASA astronauts, will "ensure the companies are meeting NASA's requirements for workplace safety, including the adherence to a drug-free environment". "There can be nothing more important to SpaceX than this project, and we ensure to meet the standards that are needed for the endeavour and responsibility that NASA has entrusted in us for the safe and reliable completion of the mission".

"The culture at Boeing ensures the integrity, safety and quality of our products, our people and their work environment", said a Boeing spokesperson in a statement. SpaceX received $2.6 billion from the program.

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