NASCAR cre­ates spe­cial­ized trav­el­ling safety team

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The Hamilton Spectator - - SPORTS - JENNA FRYER

NASCAR will have a trav­el­ling safety crew start­ing this sea­son, cre­at­ing a con­sis­tent med­i­cal staff that driv­ers have been push­ing for the last sev­eral years. The safety crew will come from Amer­i­can Med­i­cal Re­sponse and en­sure that a physi­cian and paramedics are in the safety ve­hi­cle at all Mon­ster En­ergy Cup events. AMR will also pro­vide a small group that will travel to each race, and a physi­cian who will serve as NASCAR’s pri­mary doc­tor. NASCAR has long re­lied on lo­cal emer­gency crews to treat driv­ers at crash scenes, which is the op­po­site of what many ri­valling se­ries use. IndyCar’s team is lauded as the best in the busi­ness, and is largely cred­ited with sav­ing James Hinch­cliffe’s life when he crashed dur­ing a 2015 prac­tice for the Indianapolis 500. A bro­ken sus­pen­sion piece drove through Hinch­cliffe’s femoral artery, and the IndyCar med­i­cal team tied the artery to­gether and drove him im­me­di­ately to the hospi­tal — de­ci­sions Hinch­cliffe cred­its for sav­ing his life. That ac­ci­dent raised an­other round of calls from NASCAR driv­ers for a steady crew. “This part­ner­ship fur­ther strength­ens NASCAR’s med­i­cal re­sponse ca­pa­bil­ity, mak­ing our well-es­tab­lished, med­i­cal re­sponse sys­tem even bet­ter,” said Steve O’Don­nell, NASCAR ex­ec­u­tive vice-pres­i­dent and chief rac­ing de­vel­op­ment of­fi­cer. “AMR is a leader in the emer­gency ser­vices sec­tor, and its doc­tors and paramedics add an­other layer of ex­per­tise to the im­me­di­ate re­sponse team.” AMR will po­si­tion state li­censed doc­tors and paramedics in a chase ve­hi­cle along with two NASCAR Track Ser­vices team mem­bers and im­me­di­ately re­spond to an on-track in­ci­dent. The para­medic and doc­tor will pro­vide an as­sess­ment at the scene. AMR, a sub­sidiary of En­vi­sion Health­care, is the largest provider of emer­gency med­i­cal trans­porta­tion ser­vices in the U.S., and a leader in pre-hospi­tal care and treat­ment.

JIMMY DAW­SON, THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

NASCAR will have a spe­cial­ized trav­el­ling safety crew in 2017 sim­i­lar to the IndyCar team that is cred­ited with sav­ing the life of Cana­dian James Hinch­cliffe in May 2015.

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