Friday, January 21, 2011

A statement on the California 200 Lawsuits

California 200 tragedy.

The results of a recent study conducted by a panel of experts was released today. The finding states that those killed and injured at the MDR Cal 200 should shoulder the major responsibility for the mayhem caused by the rollover of a race truck. The panel found that the spectators violated common sense safety standards by choosing to stand on the race course as the vehicles flew by at speed.

Statements that the driver should have slowed because of the proximity of the crowds were deemed to hold no bearing and were dismissed as reactionary. It was determined that the reason the mass of spectators gathered at that particular location was because of the thrill of watching the racers fly by at speed.

Furthermore, had a speed limit been in effect at that location or had the racers slowed voluntarily, the crowd would have gathered elsewhere. The truck that rolled and inflicted the injuries was NOT the first race vehicle through the incident site so the victims should have realized that their vantage point held the inherent dangers associated with spectating in such close proximity to high speed offroad racing.

Opinion that the driver should be held accountable were also dismissed as his actions were part of the racing competition and completely accidental while the spectators chose through conscious thought to stand in harm's way. While the driver was following all the rules set forth by both the BLM and the race sanctioning body, the spectators were not. Notices posted at the race course and on the promoter's website instructing spectator to remain at least 150 feet from the track went unheeded. Since the race course is defined as being 50 feet wide from either side of the course centerline, the spectators should have been much farther away than the five to ten feet shown on video of the incident.
The investigation panel, chosen from staff at the Center for Desert Activities was convened independently of any involved parties. The panel is made up of racing industry experts and media and have a combined 1000 years of experience.

In conclusion, the panel also found that because of the widespread coverage of this tragic event the likelihood of it being repeated in the US has odds of about a million to one.