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(Huffington Post)   13 fans injured as Dario Franchitti's IndyCar crashes violently into the wall. Skip ahead to 01:30 for the "holy shiat" moment   (huffingtonpost.com) divider line 59
    More: Scary, Dario Franchitti, IndyCar, Dan Wheldon, Will Power, Helio Castroneves, Scott Dixon, Reliant Stadium, Houston Fire Department  
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2318 clicks; posted to Sports » on 07 Oct 2013 at 10:33 AM (41 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-10-07 09:58:38 AM
i find it hard to believe that he wasn't killed.
 
2013-10-07 10:34:29 AM
8 people were killed at a Mexican monster truck show this weekend too.
 
2013-10-07 10:37:23 AM

FlashHarry: i find it hard to believe that he wasn't killed.


In comparing it to the Wheldon crash, this one had the bottom of the car scraping the fence instead of the top.  Also, the fence had much more give (unfortunate for the fans, but perhaps fortunate for Dario).
 
2013-10-07 10:39:16 AM

Gunny Highway: 8 people were killed at a Mexican monster truck show this weekend too.


It was actually an air show with one monster truck guy doing a stunt.
 
2013-10-07 10:41:04 AM
Geez. I just saw "Rush" a few days before this. Amazing no one was killed.
 
2013-10-07 10:43:09 AM

mediablitz: Gunny Highway: 8 people were killed at a Mexican monster truck show this weekend too.

It was actually an air show with one monster truck guy doing a stunt.


Ouch.
 
2013-10-07 10:44:21 AM

mediablitz: Geez. I just saw "Rush" a few days before this. Amazing no one was killed.


in terms of safety, today's open-wheel cars are light years away from what they were in '76 or even just ten years ago.
 
2013-10-07 10:44:52 AM

Gunny Highway: mediablitz: Gunny Highway: 8 people were killed at a Mexican monster truck show this weekend too.

It was actually an air show with one monster truck guy doing a stunt.

Ouch.


If you watch the video of the monster truck "accident", you wonder if they were trying to injure people. He does his "jump" right toward the crowd with no fence between them. Only about 50 feet.

It was an accident begging to happen.
 
2013-10-07 10:45:53 AM

FlashHarry: mediablitz: Geez. I just saw "Rush" a few days before this. Amazing no one was killed.

in terms of safety, today's open-wheel cars are light years away from what they were in '76 or even just ten years ago.


Oh yeah. Those cars in the late 70's were death buckets. There is a line in the movie that addresses it very well.
 
2013-10-07 10:50:52 AM

mediablitz: Gunny Highway: mediablitz: Gunny Highway: 8 people were killed at a Mexican monster truck show this weekend too.

It was actually an air show with one monster truck guy doing a stunt.

Ouch.

If you watch the video of the monster truck "accident", you wonder if they were trying to injure people. He does his "jump" right toward the crowd with no fence between them. Only about 50 feet.

It was an accident begging to happen.


yeah, as soon as the monster truck driver faces the crowd to go back over the cars you knew something awful would happen

just bad common sense
 
2013-10-07 10:51:47 AM

wxboy: FlashHarry: i find it hard to believe that he wasn't killed.

In comparing it to the Wheldon crash, this one had the bottom of the car scraping the fence instead of the top.  Also, the fence had much more give (unfortunate for the fans, but perhaps fortunate for Dario).


Also the speeds were lower since it was a road course and not a flat out oval.

Still a scary crash.
 
2013-10-07 10:54:31 AM
As a motorsports photographer who has been hit in the head by flying debris from a race car, I'm getting a kick out of the fact that no media people (you can see one in a hat in one of the videos *just* on the other side of the fence) were killed in this crash.

/loves my job
//sure as hell beats working
 
2013-10-07 10:59:06 AM

mediablitz: Oh yeah. Those cars in the late 70's were death buckets. There is a line in the movie that addresses it very well.


i remember when ayerton senna asked frank williams for more money, and he responded something like, "i'm already paying you $18 million a year to drive the world's safest car!"

sadly ironic in light of imola '94, but it was indeed true despite the freak accident that took his life.
 
2013-10-07 11:00:58 AM

FlashHarry: mediablitz: Oh yeah. Those cars in the late 70's were death buckets. There is a line in the movie that addresses it very well.

i remember when ayerton senna asked frank williams for more money, and he responded something like, "i'm already paying you $18 million a year to drive the world's safest car!"

sadly ironic in light of imola '94, but it was indeed true despite the freak accident that took his life.


I just watched a documentary on him. I hadn't known prior that he was banging Xuxa. Oh well, get lucky in one field of life, get unlucky in another.
 
2013-10-07 11:09:54 AM

AdamK: mediablitz: Gunny Highway: mediablitz: Gunny Highway: 8 people were killed at a Mexican monster truck show this weekend too.

It was actually an air show with one monster truck guy doing a stunt.

Ouch.

If you watch the video of the monster truck "accident", you wonder if they were trying to injure people. He does his "jump" right toward the crowd with no fence between them. Only about 50 feet.

It was an accident begging to happen.

yeah, as soon as the monster truck driver faces the crowd to go back over the cars you knew something awful would happen

just bad common sense


Do any of you have a good link to this? I see articles, but haven't seen the video.

Thanks.
 
2013-10-07 11:10:20 AM

mediablitz: FlashHarry: mediablitz: Geez. I just saw "Rush" a few days before this. Amazing no one was killed.

in terms of safety, today's open-wheel cars are light years away from what they were in '76 or even just ten years ago.

Oh yeah. Those cars in the late 70's were death buckets. There is a line in the movie that addresses it very well.


Some article did the math and did determine that over the course of 4+ seasons in the late 60's and 70's you did have a statistical 1 in 2 chance of dying in those cars.
 
2013-10-07 11:11:48 AM

skrame: AdamK: mediablitz: Gunny Highway: mediablitz: Gunny Highway: 8 people were killed at a Mexican monster truck show this weekend too.

It was actually an air show with one monster truck guy doing a stunt.

Ouch.

If you watch the video of the monster truck "accident", you wonder if they were trying to injure people. He does his "jump" right toward the crowd with no fence between them. Only about 50 feet.

It was an accident begging to happen.

yeah, as soon as the monster truck driver faces the crowd to go back over the cars you knew something awful would happen

just bad common sense

Do any of you have a good link to this? I see articles, but haven't seen the video.

Thanks.


NY Daily News has the video
 
2013-10-07 11:13:28 AM

I_C_Weener: mediablitz: FlashHarry: mediablitz: Geez. I just saw "Rush" a few days before this. Amazing no one was killed.

in terms of safety, today's open-wheel cars are light years away from what they were in '76 or even just ten years ago.

Oh yeah. Those cars in the late 70's were death buckets. There is a line in the movie that addresses it very well.

Some article did the math and did determine that over the course of 4+ seasons in the late 60's and 70's you did have a statistical 1 in 2 chance of dying in those cars.


Heh. There is a repeated line in the movie from Niki Lauda about having a 20% chance and how he tries to minimize it. Looks like his math was off?

/HIGHLY recomment the movie
 
2013-10-07 11:18:40 AM

mediablitz: I_C_Weener: mediablitz: FlashHarry: mediablitz: Geez. I just saw "Rush" a few days before this. Amazing no one was killed.

in terms of safety, today's open-wheel cars are light years away from what they were in '76 or even just ten years ago.

Oh yeah. Those cars in the late 70's were death buckets. There is a line in the movie that addresses it very well.

Some article did the math and did determine that over the course of 4+ seasons in the late 60's and 70's you did have a statistical 1 in 2 chance of dying in those cars.

Heh. There is a repeated line in the movie from Niki Lauda about having a 20% chance and how he tries to minimize it. Looks like his math was off?

/HIGHLY recomment the movie


I think they showed it was something like 5% if you only raced one time.  But over the course of a typical career, it went way up.  That's just crazy.

But if you see some of the wrecks from that era you can believe it.  If you wrecked, you were dead or crippled for life.

Look up Salt Walther at Indy for example.
 
2013-10-07 11:20:43 AM

I_C_Weener: mediablitz: FlashHarry: mediablitz: Geez. I just saw "Rush" a few days before this. Amazing no one was killed.

in terms of safety, today's open-wheel cars are light years away from what they were in '76 or even just ten years ago.

Oh yeah. Those cars in the late 70's were death buckets. There is a line in the movie that addresses it very well.

Some article did the math and did determine that over the course of 4+ seasons in the late 60's and 70's you did have a statistical 1 in 2 chance of dying in those cars.


And for those actually curious about how these accidents did force some major safety improvements, Dr, Stephen Olvey's Rapid Response is quite a good read in that respect.  (Former primary sports medicine physician for USAC and CART, now a sports medicine consultant/fellow for FIA; one of the top people in the US who's worked on making open-wheel racing a bit safer and who knows how dangerous it used to be.)  Of course, the book doesn't have stuff re Wheldon's death and the improvements afterwards (if only because the author had moved on to FIA and the last edition was 2005) but is quite educational nonetheless.

And Dario is one lucky son of a biatch...that's all I'll say.  (Thank goodness the fence gave and he didn't pull a Wheldon or a Gordon Smiley, and thank goodness the fence didn't cut the car in half leaving him with Zanardi-esque Field Amputation Via Vehicular Accident.)
 
2013-10-07 11:28:23 AM

FlashHarry: mediablitz: Geez. I just saw "Rush" a few days before this. Amazing no one was killed.

in terms of safety, today's open-wheel cars are light years away from what they were in '76 or even just ten years ago.


But they're still open-wheel/air rocketships, which is why you see guys like Hornish getting out and staying out, even when things go poorly elsewhere.
 
2013-10-07 11:29:34 AM
Swede Savage 1973 Indianapolis  Not Safe for Weak Stomachs.
 
2013-10-07 11:29:58 AM

I_C_Weener: mediablitz: I_C_Weener: mediablitz: FlashHarry: mediablitz: Geez. I just saw "Rush" a few days before this. Amazing no one was killed.

in terms of safety, today's open-wheel cars are light years away from what they were in '76 or even just ten years ago.

Oh yeah. Those cars in the late 70's were death buckets. There is a line in the movie that addresses it very well.

Some article did the math and did determine that over the course of 4+ seasons in the late 60's and 70's you did have a statistical 1 in 2 chance of dying in those cars.

Heh. There is a repeated line in the movie from Niki Lauda about having a 20% chance and how he tries to minimize it. Looks like his math was off?

/HIGHLY recomment the movie

I think they showed it was something like 5% if you only raced one time.  But over the course of a typical career, it went way up.  That's just crazy.

But if you see some of the wrecks from that era you can believe it.  If you wrecked, you were dead or crippled for life.

Look up Salt Walther at Indy for example.


I'll put it like this--the shocker with Swede Savage's death in 1973 wasn't that he died running the Indy 500--the shocker was that the guy lived for some thirty-odd days afterwards, seemed to be recovering, and then went into massive organ failure and died.  (There's actually two different claims on how THAT happened; some sources say kidney failure, Dr. Olvey and a few other sources note fulminant hepatitis which was the result of iatrogenic illness.  At any rate, the burns themselves didn't get him, which is pretty goddamn amazing if you've ever seen video of that accident.)

And yes, pretty well up until the late 70s you'd have at least one person a year killed in open-wheel competition (and about the same number in stock cars, too).
 
2013-10-07 11:31:00 AM

mediablitz: I_C_Weener: mediablitz: FlashHarry: mediablitz: Geez. I just saw "Rush" a few days before this. Amazing no one was killed.

in terms of safety, today's open-wheel cars are light years away from what they were in '76 or even just ten years ago.

Oh yeah. Those cars in the late 70's were death buckets. There is a line in the movie that addresses it very well.

Some article did the math and did determine that over the course of 4+ seasons in the late 60's and 70's you did have a statistical 1 in 2 chance of dying in those cars.

Heh. There is a repeated line in the movie from Niki Lauda about having a 20% chance and how he tries to minimize it. Looks like his math was off?

/HIGHLY recomment the movie


Here's an article that took a look at the numbers.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-24172885

He was a little off on the 20% stat, but the line about "every year two of us die" was pretty close, if you take into account F1 drivers like Jim Clark who were killed in other forms of motorsport
 
2013-10-07 11:37:04 AM

I_C_Weener: Swede Savage 1973 Indianapolis  Not Safe for Weak Stomachs.


...and speak of Cao Cao and he will come, apparently.  (Yes, this is the video of which I spoke; the Indy 500 of that year was described as outright jinxed for very good reason and not just because of that wreck.  The sheer level of WTFery re that whole session is pretty much one for the record books.)

Haven't even gotten into F1, either (and Tom Pryce's fatal wreck in 1976--I'm kind of amazed we didn't see a repeat of that in South Korea this year, what with the wacky hijinks with the safety crew--and if you think Swede Savage's wreck was NSFL, that's pretty much nothing compared to the footage of what happened to Price and the poor field marshal he accidentally hit).

/do very much want to see Rush, though...have heard it's quite a good movie
 
2013-10-07 11:40:18 AM

ThunderChild: Here's an article that took a look at the numbers.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-24172885

He was a little off on the 20% stat, but the line about "every year two of us die" was pretty close, if you take into account F1 drivers like Jim Clark who were killed in other forms of motorsport


My favorite part of the article in the Lauda quote:

Niki Lauda himself, when approached by the BBC for a comment, sent a message back saying that it was "a rhetorical statement rather than a precise statistical calculation".

Classic Lauda...

/thanks for the link
 
2013-10-07 11:42:09 AM

I_C_Weener: Swede Savage 1973 Indianapolis  Not Safe for Weak Stomachs.


the amazing and even more tragic thing is, swede savage survived the accident only to die from liver failure from contracting hepatitis B during his hospital stay.
 
2013-10-07 11:43:02 AM

I_C_Weener: Swede Savage 1973 Indianapolis  Not Safe for Weak Stomachs.


Been at least 5 years since I watched that last. Still makes me jump when he crashes.
 
2013-10-07 11:48:38 AM

wxboy: FlashHarry: i find it hard to believe that he wasn't killed.

In comparing it to the Wheldon crash, this one had the bottom of the car scraping the fence instead of the top.  Also, the fence had much more give (unfortunate for the fans, but perhaps fortunate for Dario).


Yeah, that give in the posts was critical to Dario surviving.  If you look at the fence posts around the Las Vegas oval, there is no reason for any open wheel car to run there.  Those posts are so heavily reinforced that there isn't any give at all.  They aren't just steel rolled into small circular fence poles like most places. Those heavy posts are fine for fully fendered metal bodies, but those catch fences will just eat composite bodies.  The fencing itself is not really the issue. The core issue is locating the grandstands on the outside of the exit of the bend.

At first I thought it was odd that they did not have a larger secondary set of fencing (the fence to keep spectators separated from credentialed media and course workers).  But even if that second fence were larger, no promoter would have a grandstand with two sets of high fencing between the track and the grandstands.  Dario's car punched that fencing so high and hard that no venue would have been able to counter that kind of energy.  Luckily that fencing stayed upright when it headed up into the stands, I'd take a metal net to the body over two giant metal javelins any day.

They need to locate those stands at the inside of the exit of the turn and just run a 8 ft chain link secondary fence on the outside.
 
2013-10-07 12:00:28 PM

I_C_Weener: Swede Savage 1973 Indianapolis  Not Safe for Weak Stomachs.


At the .50 second mark what the hell did that dude throw on the fire, gasoline?
 
2013-10-07 12:06:18 PM

under a mountain: I_C_Weener: Swede Savage 1973 Indianapolis  Not Safe for Weak Stomachs.

At the .50 second mark what the hell did that dude throw on the fire, gasoline?


Water?
 
2013-10-07 12:13:35 PM

I_C_Weener: under a mountain: I_C_Weener: Swede Savage 1973 Indianapolis  Not Safe for Weak Stomachs.

At the .50 second mark what the hell did that dude throw on the fire, gasoline?

Water?


What kind of fuel did they run back then?  Water will put out an alcohol fire.
 
2013-10-07 12:13:55 PM
mediablitz:If you watch the video of the monster truck "accident", you wonder if they were trying to injure people. He does his "jump" right toward the crowd with no fence between them. Only about 50 feet.

It was an accident begging to happen.


Looks like the throttle got stuck.  Even after the truck stopped you can hear the engine revving at full steam for several seconds until it either died or someone shut it off.
 
2013-10-07 12:16:01 PM

under a mountain: I_C_Weener: Swede Savage 1973 Indianapolis  Not Safe for Weak Stomachs.

At the .50 second mark what the hell did that dude throw on the fire, gasoline?


Yes.  Things were different back in the 70's.
 
2013-10-07 12:16:36 PM

I_C_Weener: under a mountain: I_C_Weener: Swede Savage 1973 Indianapolis  Not Safe for Weak Stomachs.

At the .50 second mark what the hell did that dude throw on the fire, gasoline?

Water?


Oxygen
 
2013-10-07 12:16:53 PM
I am just glad that Dario is okay. That's all... that wreck could have been far far worse.
 
2013-10-07 12:24:38 PM

tricycleracer: I_C_Weener: under a mountain: I_C_Weener: Swede Savage 1973 Indianapolis  Not Safe for Weak Stomachs.

At the .50 second mark what the hell did that dude throw on the fire, gasoline?

Water?

What kind of fuel did they run back then?  Water will put out an alcohol fire.


Alcohol.  But would it spread it?
 
2013-10-07 12:24:57 PM

grinding_journalist: As a motorsports photographer who has been hit in the head by flying debris from a race car, I'm getting a kick out of the fact that no media people (you can see one in a hat in one of the videos *just* on the other side of the fence) were killed in this crash.


Former motosport photographer here. I never got hit by anything, but there have been a few times where it was pretty scary.
The one I remember is being at the end of the front stretch at Loudon and having a car hit the wall right in front of the fence
opening I was shooting though. The car careened off of the wall, spun and hit the wall again near turn 2, ass end first where a ball of flame erupted.

I agree with the guy who said fans were far too close to the track. Especially at what appears to be a right hand curve.
 
2013-10-07 12:26:34 PM

Joe Peanut: mediablitz:If you watch the video of the monster truck "accident", you wonder if they were trying to injure people. He does his "jump" right toward the crowd with no fence between them. Only about 50 feet.

It was an accident begging to happen.

Looks like the throttle got stuck.  Even after the truck stopped you can hear the engine revving at full steam for several seconds until it either died or someone shut it off.


I wonder if the driver somehow bounced out of his seat, the vehicle appears to be completely uncontrolled.
 
2013-10-07 12:32:24 PM
That Swede Savage 1973 wreck reminded me of the Fontana wreck with Dario's good friend Greg Moore.  Exiting a turn 2, power oversteer, and straight into the inside barrier.  Yeeesh.
 
2013-10-07 12:32:29 PM
Wow.
 
2013-10-07 12:33:05 PM
Also, hope he gets a sympathy hummer from the ex.
 
2013-10-07 12:33:07 PM
watch "grand prix" sometime. watch in horror as you see spectators sitting on hay bales right on the side of the track at zandvoort. it's insane.
 
2013-10-07 12:33:24 PM

mediablitz: Gunny Highway: mediablitz: Gunny Highway: 8 people were killed at a Mexican monster truck show this weekend too.

It was actually an air show with one monster truck guy doing a stunt.

Ouch.

If you watch the video of the monster truck "accident", you wonder if they were trying to injure people. He does his "jump" right toward the crowd with no fence between them. Only about 50 feet.

It was an accident begging to happen.


Did some research on that incident.  From what people are gathering in other articles, after the jump the driver hit his head on the frame and went unconscious...left his foot on the gas and went into the crowd.  Being Mexico, there was no kill switch on the truck.  And yes, even with a kill switch you still have forward momentum...but you'd have compression braking well before he started slamming into people in the crowd.
 
2013-10-07 12:45:19 PM

grinding_journalist: As a motorsports photographer who has been hit in the head by flying debris from a race car, I'm getting a kick out of the fact that no media people (you can see one in a hat in one of the videos *just* on the other side of the fence) were killed in this crash.

/loves my job
//sure as hell beats working


Just finished watching a CNN interview with one of them.  He thought he was recording his last moments on Earth.  (Apparently a fairly large piece of shrapnel missed his head by about 18")
 
2013-10-07 01:35:50 PM
Thank goodness it wasnt NASCAR this time. The I-Hate-NASCAR dorks would be having a feeding frenzy.
 
2013-10-07 02:01:45 PM

mikaloyd: Thank goodness it wasnt NASCAR this time. The I-Hate-NASCAR dorks would be having a feeding frenzy.


That's what happens when a NASCAR driver turns right herp derp. what a bunch of rednecks!1
 
2013-10-07 02:05:14 PM
Sato has a dangerous driver vibe doesnt he?
 
2013-10-07 02:18:11 PM

mikaloyd: Sato has a dangerous driver vibe doesnt he?


Usually, Sato is ridiculously crazy, but this incident was not Sato's fault. he got loose on a bump with Dario on his side, at precisely the wrong location.

(If this was the old Dallara, Dario's gone. If it was the Champ Car Lolas or Reynards, Dario's legs are full Zanardi).
 
2013-10-07 02:33:43 PM

gt4pete: the Fontana wreck with Dario's good friend Greg Moore.


that was the first thing i thought of too. i watched that race live on TV. as soon as it happened, we all knew he was dead. it was so awful.
 
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