hard to watch video - van Summeren crash
Last Post 04/08/2014 02:19 PM by Dale Dale. 26 Replies.
Author Messages
Orange Crush

Posts:1217

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04/06/2014 02:59 PM
Vansummeren is out of hospital but the lady that got hit is in coma. The video really brings about the crazy danger that bike racing can be http://www.demorgen.be/dm/nl/1001/Wielrennen/article/detail/1843565/2014/04/06/Vansummeren-geeft-op-na-harde-botsing-slachtoffer-is-er-erg-aan-toe.dhtml
Keith Richards

Posts:743

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04/06/2014 05:01 PM
Wow. He blew her up. Ugh. I would be a mess if I did that to a spectator.
----- It is his word versus ours. We like our word. We like where we stand and we like our credibility."--Lance Armstrong.
Cosmic Kid

Posts:1150

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04/06/2014 05:28 PM
Why the hell were they standing there? That just had disaster written all over it.

Race organizers are gonna have to answer why there was no marshall there....

Best wishes for the injured spectator.
Just say "NO!" to WCP!!!!
huckleberry

Posts:237

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04/06/2014 06:45 PM
Wow. Scary stuff.

Patched Tube

Posts:29

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04/06/2014 09:37 PM
Jeez... that lady never knew what hit her and she went down like a bag of wet cement - never even moved. Not good.

What the heck were those people doing there and why wasn't there a race marshal at that location. Serious cock up by the organizers/local police.
-- that which cannot be proven as true must be regarded as false or not affirmed as true
Dale

Posts:501

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04/06/2014 10:21 PM
Worse than the Jalavert/Nelissen-Gendarme wreck in the 1994 TdF

That's a ugly situation
79pmooney

Posts:1175

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04/07/2014 01:28 AM
There was an incident in the Nationals TT, 1979? where a cement truck blew through an intersection and clobbered Alan Kingsbury who was on course to win. Very different circumstances, yet very similar in that the truck driver never knew there was a race happening. He was just doing his job, driving legally and properly on a quiet rural street on a Sunday morning. Entered an intersection he knew well with stop signs for the cross street. The riders were going through the stop sign and crossing the main street.

There was a course marshal, a young girl who was on the other side of the intersection with her hands full stopping a car coming the other way.

These incidents are on the race officials. It isn't the racers job to be looking for things that should never be there. It is up to the race officials and organizers to see to it that people are informed and that people, cars, etc. are not on the course.

Sadly, if justice in Belgium plays out to the fairest, this woman should receive a very large settlement from the race's insurance policy and all races will pay more later because of it. All for something that should never have happened.

Ben
ChinookPass

Posts:467

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04/07/2014 08:55 AM
weird. I think she thought she was safe standing on that traffic island. VanSummeren was headed for the ground whether she was there or not.
zootracer

Posts:311

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04/07/2014 12:04 PM
I watched the video several times. Looks like the lady was turning around and VanSummeren clipped her right shoulder, which was extended into the roadway.
Sweet Milk

Posts:93

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04/07/2014 12:14 PM
Wow - not good...

This is why I stopped promoting races - for the downtown crits that I promoted I usually had over a 100 volunteers working the races and I still lost sleep over the possibility of crap like this happening. You do the best job you possibly can, but you are dependent on the individuals watching the corners, access roads and driveways. I did my level best to have at least two marshals at any risk location and make sure one of them would have previous experience. This as much as to help each other as to having them keeping an eye on one another and make them sure that no bonehead moves were pulled. That said at every race day I promoted at some point some bad mistake did occur that I was aware of - fortunately never with a bad outcome, and I am probably unaware of most of the things that did happen...

I never promoted any road races; I can only imagine how much bigger the issues are there.

PS: Most volunteer marshals are very conscientious - we owe them a collective thank you for doing an often challenging job
Keith Richards

Posts:743

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04/07/2014 12:26 PM
Promoting races is harsh work. I promoted a race and I told the volunteers to make sure the course was safe during inspection. So what happens? The only JR in the race I was in (3/4), crashes into a fire hydrant right in front of me! I actually pulled out of the race (rode straight off the course) to inform his mom.

Last time for me...
----- It is his word versus ours. We like our word. We like where we stand and we like our credibility."--Lance Armstrong.
Sweet Milk

Posts:93

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04/07/2014 12:34 PM
Yeah, course prep is the most essential part - The amount of hay bales that we would use was pretty impressive. Also the towns that I worked with allowed us to put up double barriers, that is put barriers at the intersections with the course, and another set of barriers one block away; creating a one block buffer zone around the course. Another critical step is to meet with the business and residence owners in the area, make sure that good relations are maintained and that they understand the nature of the event.
Orange Crush

Posts:1217

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04/07/2014 12:48 PM
apparently it was at end of a roundabout (exit) where they never put marshals; there was a marshal at entry of roundabout.

unclear what people where doing there but according to some comments people stands there "all the time".

Vansummeren and organization are at risk of being proscecuted

If he doesn't hit the lady Vansummeren is probably a lot worse off.
Cosmic Kid

Posts:1150

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04/07/2014 01:01 PM
How the hell can they hold Vansummeren responsible? It is not like he said "Oh, I'm gonna tag that old lady", nor was he negligent in his actions.
Just say "NO!" to WCP!!!!
Keith Richards

Posts:743

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04/07/2014 01:02 PM
It took the death of Monsere for cycling to take road closures seriously, this will most likely result in changes in where spectators are allowed.
----- It is his word versus ours. We like our word. We like where we stand and we like our credibility."--Lance Armstrong.
Orange Crush

Posts:1217

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04/07/2014 01:40 PM
Posted By Cosmic Kid on 04/07/2014 01:01 PM
How the hell can they hold Vansummeren responsible? It is not like he said "Oh, I'm gonna tag that old lady", nor was he negligent in his actions.


Vansummeren acknowledged making an error of judgement in trying to swerve around the obstacle on opposite side. That might translate to a "causing involuntary harm" charge according to reports I am reading on Belgian sites. I know cyclists and pedestrians are open targets on roads here but laws in Europe are a bit different.. In this case that might be to detriment of Vansummeren but ultimately it is a good thing.
Cosmic Kid

Posts:1150

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04/07/2014 03:30 PM
From cyclingnews....

Rumours have spread about potential ramifications for the rider and organisers. Earlier today, Belgian sport channel Sporza reported that Vansummeren could face a legal case if he is found to be at fault. However, Garmin denied that any such action had been brought to their attention. “I read about it on the internet. We have spoken to the police, but that is normal in Belgium when there has been a big accident and there is a victim. It is nothing against Johan,” sad van Bondt. “We have had no indication that Johan will have any legal proceedings against him.”
Just say "NO!" to WCP!!!!
Orange Crush

Posts:1217

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04/07/2014 04:47 PM
maybe Bondt should talk to Tom Janssens, spokesperson of the legal court in Kortrijk. His statement is pretty clear.

Janssens indicates it get complicated because the incident is during race. THat will largely determine whether the investigation leads to prosecution(s) and of whom.

http://www.nieuwsblad.be/sportwereld/cnt/dmf20140406_01057919

"Tom Janssens, woordvoerder van het parket van Kortrijk, bevestigt dat een onderzoek gaande is. 'We gaan onder meer na of de plaats van het ongeval voldoende beveiligd was. Op basis van de verschillende getuigenissen zullen we dan in alle sereniteit een standpunt innemen. Omdat het om een aanrijding van een zwakke weggebruikster gaat, volgen er eventueel ook vervolgingen.' Een makkelijke zaak is dat zeker niet. 'Het ongeval vond plaats in een wedstrijd. Dat betekent tussen de eerste wedstrijdwagen en de groene vlag. In dat geval worden aangepaste regels gehanteerd.'"
Cosmic Kid

Posts:1150

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04/07/2014 05:21 PM
Posted By Orange Crush on 04/07/2014 04:47 PM


"Tom Janssens, woordvoerder van het parket van Kortrijk, bevestigt dat een onderzoek gaande is. 'We gaan onder meer na of de plaats van het ongeval voldoende beveiligd was. Op basis van de verschillende getuigenissen zullen we dan in alle sereniteit een standpunt innemen. Omdat het om een aanrijding van een zwakke weggebruikster gaat, volgen er eventueel ook vervolgingen.' Een makkelijke zaak is dat zeker niet. 'Het ongeval vond plaats in een wedstrijd. Dat betekent tussen de eerste wedstrijdwagen en de groene vlag. In dat geval worden aangepaste regels gehanteerd.'"


Oh, well THAT clears it up!!

Just say "NO!" to WCP!!!!
Cosmic Kid

Posts:1150

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04/07/2014 05:26 PM
In all seriousness, it sounds like the victim has not improved at all and her situation is extremely grave.

I hope she recovers, but words like "traumatic brain injury" are very frightening. I doubt she will ever be the same again, even if she recovers.

As for the possibillity of prosecuting Vansummeren, it seems like theya re still trying to decide what to do and nothing is locked down. I would still be shocked if they decided to.

The organizers, however.....
Just say "NO!" to WCP!!!!
Orange Crush

Posts:1217

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04/07/2014 05:38 PM
Yes her situation is still grave; the husband (and the public at large) are not blaming Vansummeren whatsoever though.

I don't think in the end Vansummeren will get proscecuted. But because a "weak road user" was the victim, this automatically triggers an investigation and possibility of proscecution. Ironically, this is exactly the law that we in North America always complain about not having and why a driver hitting a cyclist can get away with it here. Its the law protecting weak road users.

The organizers...it will depend on how the race situation is interpreted. Because the incident occured between the race lead car and the last (with green "all clear" flag), the rules of road are different and likely the women and others on that barrier should not have been where they were according to race rules. Kinda like having to clear the road when an ambulance with flashing lights passes. But how on earth is a race organization going to control spectator behaviour.
Cosmic Kid

Posts:1150

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04/07/2014 05:46 PM
Yeah, I get what you are saying about controlling spectators' behavior, but how hard would it ahve been to place a marshall there, like at every other piece of traffic furniture?

To be honest, I'm surprised we haven't see a serious accident like this before, but just involvening one of the marshals. I'm always amazed at how calm they are as the race blows by them.....I'd cr@p my pants.
Just say "NO!" to WCP!!!!
Orange Crush

Posts:1217

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04/07/2014 05:55 PM
Well growing up on the Amstel Gold course I can tell you there's no way in hell you are going to get enough marchals for every obstacle. That is why pros consider it one of the most dangerous one-day races out there. Flanders is similar, road furniture galore (this is why around here I can ride with my eyes closed)

In this case the marchal was at start of traffic circle...apparently according to rules.

And yeah I was going to write exactly that...surprised something like this doesn't happen more often.
Yo Mike

Posts:269

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04/08/2014 09:15 AM
Big precedents at stake. I have sympathies for the woman injured, but she was ON the race course, which should not be allowed in the first place.

By analogy, one cannot sue the ball park if one is hit by a foul ball at a baseball game. The spectator assumes the risk by attending.

The organization, preparation and marshaling of the race should be evaluated to avoid a repeat incident.
Oldfart

Posts:485

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04/08/2014 11:48 AM
I was thinking some of the same thoughts as many of you. Many times when watching the traffic furniture Marshall I think " worst job in cycling". I also thought it was foreseeable that the peloton would going around that island so why would anyone be there?
Keith Richards

Posts:743

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04/08/2014 01:10 PM
Was it last year that some dude center punched an island in P-R?

Yup....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=57XY6DkV2eA
----- It is his word versus ours. We like our word. We like where we stand and we like our credibility."--Lance Armstrong.
Dale

Posts:501

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04/08/2014 02:19 PM
I'm actually surprised more riders don't get taken down by road hard, roundabouts, spectators or dogs.

One of the DVD's I watch when I'm on the trainer shows a line of guys slowly veering away from a post and the last rider in the line drills it, gets up, kicks the post in disgust, then goes to pick up his bike.


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