In November, Russia lost contact with a 2,750kg, $58 million satellite. Turns out, that happened because the Meteor-M weather satellite was programmed with the wrong coordinates.
On December 12, SpaceX will launch a Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, sending an uncrewed Dragon cargo capsule filled with supplies to the International Space Station. No big deal, except that two components, both the first stage rocket and the spacecraft, have already flown on previous missions. That's never happened before.
NASA is currently developing a space capsule, called Orion, that will eventually carry a crew of four astronauts to Low Earth Orbit and beyond. Should something go catastrophically wrong during launch, an abort system will work to save the lives of the astronauts - but whoa, would they ever be in for a hell of a ride.