Medical care under scrutiny
Games organisers to look into delay helping runner
ATHLETICS: Games organisers will investigate the delay getting medical attention to collapsed Scottish marathon runner Callum Hawkins.
In the most graphic images of the Games, a stricken Hawkins was slumped on the side of the road for several minutes after crashing into a number of barriers as his body melted down in the brutal Gold Coast conditions.
Horrified viewers across the world reacted on social media as serious concerns for Hawkins’ health spread with no medicos getting to the stricken runner.
Runners are instantly disqualified out of the marathon if they receive any medical assistance but it was obvious this situation had gone on too long.
Legendary UK runner Steve Cram said the situation was “a disgrace” and even apologised to viewers.
“I’m just concerned for his welfare,” he told the BBC. “He hit his head on the barrier. I’m sorry if you’re watching this at home, it’s really distressing. He’s going to hurt himself and there’s nobody anywhere near.”
Two-time Commonwealth Games silver medal winner Dave Culbert agreed the lack of assistance was an issue.
“Now we need to see someone out there. We need someone to at least ask him, ‘Callum, would you like us to take you off the course?’, he said on Channel Seven.
Fellow Scottish distance runner Andrew Butchart tweeted: “SOMEONE F — KING HELP HIM!!!”
Callum’s brother Derek thanked people for their messages of support.
“Can’t describe how upsetting and distressing it was to watch but just glad he’s all right,” he tweeted.
Hawkins, who was leading the race and only 2km from the finish line when he collapsed, was taken away in an ambulance for further treatment.
Team Scotland later reported he was sitting up in bed and talking to his dad, and would undergo further medical tests.
Gold Coast Commonwealth Games boss Mark Peters said he was distressed by the scenes and would investigate the delay in medical help, but defended the 8.15am start time for the race.
“Obviously the health of the athlete is absolutely prime,” he said.
“We will find out factually what happened and then others can learn.”
Peters said athletes ran in “snow and 30-odd degree heat ... so we don’t think that’s an issue”.