DUELIST
OTHER TRACK & FIELD ACCIDENTS 6/23/2005 3:05PM Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
Not to belabor the point that some field events are dangerous, but just picked up the LA Times paper and it lists these other accidents:

2005 June 22 - Carson USATF Championships - Official Paul Suzuki killed by shot

2005 Apr. 2 - Cal State Northridge - USC Noah Bryant has hammer ricochet off of fence back into his face requiring several metal plates to repair damage

2005 Eugene - NCAA West - female official struck by discus

2000 Europe - 4 people killed by hammer during summer season

1980s Bakersfield - Cal State LA meet - Sportswriter killed by hammer at Cal State LA

1977 Sacramento - Official Maree Rodebugh killed by shot
you got that!
RE: OTHER TRACK & FIELD ACCIDENTS 6/23/2005 3:09PM - in reply to DUELIST Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
would about that official who got speared by the javelin
DUELIST
RE: OTHER TRACK & FIELD ACCIDENTS 6/23/2005 3:13PM - in reply to you got that! Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
there were no mention of javelins in the article but I am curious what sort of accidents have occured. also, if any field guys are out there--anybody know anything about the reasoning/design/testing of security measures for these events so that spectators and officials are protected?
realist
RE: OTHER TRACK & FIELD ACCIDENTS 6/23/2005 3:35PM - in reply to DUELIST Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
When anyone is inadvertently hit by a field implement, it is a tragedy, regardless of the situation. What happened to that official today is extremely unfortunate, and I offer my condolances to his family and friends.

That being said, it is my opinion that some of these older officials need to understand when it is time to hang up the proverbial starters pistol. This might be an unpopular stand, but anyone closely involved in the sport of track and field will agree that many of these older, less mobile, less competent officials are not only putting the integrity of the meet at risk, but also putting their own health and well being into jeopardy (one article mentioned that this particular official was hard of hearing from years of firing a starters pistol - did someone yell and he not hear it?? who knows). Whether it being a missed relay zone flag, or a close call in the javelin, some officials are simply no longer cut out for the job of officiating.

I think that the best "security" measure that can be taken to prevent such incidents is for USATF to put more stringent controls over official's certification. With more able bodied, more alert people working these meets, many mistakes and accidents could be prevented.
GreatAmerican
RE: OTHER TRACK & FIELD ACCIDENTS 6/23/2005 5:05PM - in reply to realist Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
Good thought (to have older officials retire). However, the USATF system of officials perpetuates "experienced insiders" to the point that they are usually the ones who are "selected" to work the "big meets" over younger more alert and agile officials. What I am describing is an "old boys" network that actually hurts the sport. Can it change in a way that younger officials will feel wanted and rewarded....I doubt it, at least not as long as the "insiders" will deny what has been and is going on within the officials' corp. These are the same fools who are trying to use pressure on meet directors to try to get paid for serving as "volunteer officials". These are the same guys who place their egos in front of the beautiful sport that they should be serving.
TDF
RE: OTHER TRACK & FIELD ACCIDENTS 6/23/2005 5:08PM - in reply to realist Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
I was at an all comers meet held at North Central College in the Spring of 1980. I believe someone was hit by an errant hammer throw and died a few days later.
outerbanx
RE: OTHER TRACK & FIELD ACCIDENTS 6/23/2005 5:11PM - in reply to TDF Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
a high schooloer was speared in the head by a javelin in Tennessee years ago.,...the state immediately eliminated javelin from all high school competitions.
Thor
RE: OTHER TRACK & FIELD ACCIDENTS 6/23/2005 5:45PM - in reply to DUELIST Reply | Return to Index | Report Post

DUELIST wrote:

there were no mention of javelins in the article but I am curious what sort of accidents have occured. also, if any field guys are out there--anybody know anything about the reasoning/design/testing of security measures for these events so that spectators and officials are protected?


This accident occurred during a scheduled practice at a national meet where officials are at the site. The official was not paying attention and got hit and unfortunately passed way. Sadly, his family has lost a father and the thrower has to live with this tragedy even though in no way was it his/her fault.

The solution to this problem is to stop treating track and field like an all inclusive professional sport. The NFL would not think of putting an aged official on the field or having amputees play 7 on 7 between quarters yet USATF routinely puts incompetent people in officiating positions and adds events that welcome all groups in our society. They run disabled events at the national championships, even though there are separate national championships for diabled folks. There are races for young kids and all other kinds of activities that detract from the second most competitive meet held annually in the world. Until USATF's leadership decides to treat the sport with respect, "accidents" will continue to make the news.
Runnerbabe
RE: OTHER TRACK & FIELD ACCIDENTS 6/23/2005 7:52PM - in reply to Thor Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
OK- I see what you're all saying about older officlals being "unsuitable", though I don't necessarily agree. Anyway, who else is there? I have not seen many "youngsters" step up and devote the time and energy it takes to go to the clinics, get certified, and be available for the multitude of meets that are almost aways understaffed. Lapses of concentration can occur at any age, and they can occur not only when an offical is occupied with another situation but ALSO when an athlete is focused on his/her event. What happened to this official was tragic, but certainly not necessarily due to age and/or incompetence. Don't pass judgement until you get out there and become an official yourself. It is NOT an easy job. Without them there would be no meets.
RB
Thor
RE: OTHER TRACK & FIELD ACCIDENTS 6/24/2005 4:40AM - in reply to Runnerbabe Reply | Return to Index | Report Post

Runnerbabe wrote:

OK- I see what you're all saying about older officlals being "unsuitable", though I don't necessarily agree. Anyway, who else is there? I have not seen many "youngsters" step up and devote the time and energy it takes to go to the clinics, get certified, and be available for the multitude of meets that are almost aways understaffed. Lapses of concentration can occur at any age, and they can occur not only when an offical is occupied with another situation but ALSO when an athlete is focused on his/her event. What happened to this official was tragic, but certainly not necessarily due to age and/or incompetence. Don't pass judgement until you get out there and become an official yourself. It is NOT an easy job. Without them there would be no meets.
RB


I do officiate and I totally agree about age being an issue with officials. Again, USATF treats the officials like red headed step children, making them buy their meet attire and paying their own way to the meets. Sometimes they do provide an edible lunch for 12 hours of work.

Age is an issue whether you want to admit it or not. A 77 year old man should not be in the sector unaware of what is going on at a scheduled practice at the national meet. Rule #1 in throwing: never turn your back to the ring.

You are also correct that there would be no meets. IF USATF cannot get quality officials for meets at all levels, the meet(s) should be cancelled. End of story. The leadership in our sport is a disgrace.