A race director’s nightmare

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This topic contains 5 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Ryan 9 years, 7 months ago.

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  • #10522

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    The finish line structure at this past weekend's Omaha Mile collapsed while a photographer was taking pictures of the elite runners in front of the finish line. Pretty amazing series of pictures. Fortunately, from what I've heard, nobody was hurt though a few of those standing under the structure as it fell were understandably shaken up.

    http://www.ndorfnz.com/clients/boom/

  • #26314

    Ed
    Member

    That is very scarry – did you notice the lady on the left?  She looks clueless for the first several photos – she is lucky that she did not get hurt.  I also found it strange that most of the people posing tried to catch the scaffolding – I guess you had to be there.

  • #26315

    robrunrob
    Member

    I thought that was Henry Rono in the picture and with a little digging around I see he ran 5:54.  Interesting.

  • #26316

    rlana
    Member

    That was a freakin' accident! 😮 Hope none of them was badly hurt. I agree with what Ed said, I also find it strange when the people tried to catch the scaffolding… ???

    Lana

  • #26317

    GTF
    Member

    Well, the scaffolding fell slowly enough for them to 'catch' it because it was clearly anchored with those highly visible white ropes.  It could (should) have been anchored even better than it was and it was certainly an unsafe situation, but not a Hindenberg type disaster despite the ominous sepia-toned photos.  8)

  • #26318

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    I do think they were probably seeing the slow lean begin and thought they could push it back up into place. Once it leaned too far, they just brought it down in a more controlled manner.

    Of course, none of us was there so it's hard to say what really happened (unless someone recognizes who the Wisconsin Runner guy in the picture is and might know how to contact him). But it didn't seem like a sudden crash, more of a slow lean and eventual collapse under its own weight.

    I just thought it was interesting. All of these things that most of us never think about, such as how to securely anchor a start line or finish line structure, that RDs have to work out and never get credit for when things go perfectly but face plenty of blame for when just one of those things, especially something as visible as this, goes wrong. This isn't a nightmare so much because it was a dangerous situation, it seemed to happen with enough warning for everyone to escape unharmed, but because when something like this happens it can reflect poorly on the race and the RD can take a lot of heat for it.

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