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  1. #1
    Senior Member billh's Avatar
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    liability for spectator injury

    Anyone have experience with spectators injured during a race and whether they sued the racer(s), event organizers, event sponsors, USA Cycling, or the municipality that permitted the event? Just curious. They are holding a race in my city and wondering if the city public works dept thought through everything.

    I read over the USA Cycling Event Insurance summary and it mentions coverage for "personal injury". I wonder if this covers injury to spectators.

  2. #2
    @ Checkmate Cycling jbhowat's Avatar
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    I'm pretty sure USA Cycling covers the racers from law suit against spectators. Really all you need is a sign that says spectators assume all risk and will not hold racers or organizers liable for injuries or damage. Have a sign as they drive in. Other wise they COULD sue the racer, but USA Cycling would cover them, I think.
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  3. #3
    Lance Hater Laggard's Avatar
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    You mean like this?

  4. #4
    cab horn
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    Is there a caption to go with that picture?

  5. #5
    Lance Hater Laggard's Avatar
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    It happened during a crit in Santa Cruz, CA. The injured spectator had his skull fractured in three places.

  6. #6
    Cheers! 2wheeled's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Laggard
    It happened during a crit in Santa Cruz, CA. The injured spectator had his skull fractured in three places.
    Ouch! It is as bad as it looks. Did the rider forget to turn or something?

  7. #7
    Meow! my58vw's Avatar
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    Wow I would like to know what happened... I would hate to be the rider... he looks like he feels like crap
    Just your average club rider... :)

  8. #8
    Senior Member socalrider's Avatar
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    I was racing the pro/1/2 race at Manhattan Beach, was sprinting up the gutter when 2 other riders had the same idea.. we ended taking out about 5 spectaors.

    We were fine but the spectators had some minor injuries, nothing like getting ploughed over at 40 mph by 3 riders..

  9. #9
    Announcer EventServices's Avatar
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    The City of Grand Rapids (MI) once demanded that the promoter provide 8-foot plexiglass around both sides of an entire Crit course. They finally backed off when they realized it was going to cost more than a million bucks.

    I think that since a cycling event is held under the auspices of USAC, then they are the responsible parties. Not the riders who cause the injury.

    This would be a good question for Bob Mionske.

  10. #10
    Meow! my58vw's Avatar
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    What suprises me is that accidents do not happen more often. There are so many times that I see people walking across the road in the middle of criteriums, etc. There has been so many close calls it is unbelievable. I have never though seen a rider go off the track and hit a spectator.

    As others have said I would think that spectators would assume all liability of watching races and that riders would not be liable.
    Just your average club rider... :)

  11. #11
    Cheers! 2wheeled's Avatar
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    Do you remember Abdujaporov impaling himself with one of the barriers on the Champ Elysees back in the early 90's. I think that's the worst crash I've ever seen.

  12. #12
    Senior Member socalrider's Avatar
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    The abdu crash was one of the worst ever, I remember it happening.. I thought he was dead, it was 1991 TDF.. Seeing that crash at full speed, nothing like hitting a barricade at 45mph, going down headfirst then getting mowed over by 2 other riders.. He had to get up and cross the line to keep the green jersey..

  13. #13
    Senior Member collegeskier's Avatar
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    I think that most personal injury lawyers would tell you to sue everyone. Most of the precautions limit liability. There are generally laws that protect governments from excessive liability claims as well. As for you a the rider, race organizer, etc. I am guessing the wording of the USAC insurance policy is the question.

  14. #14
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    Ever seen WRC on Eurosport? Or Paris-Dakar?

  15. #15
    Ink-Stained Wretch pinky's Avatar
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    And to think I nearly drilled one of the staff this weekend when I leaned into a turn more than they expected...the pigeon was not so lucky though....

  16. #16
    Senior Member socalrider's Avatar
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    No spectators were injured this one race but made for an interesting story.. I am doing the Nisei week criterium in downtown LA.. The Cat. 1-2 race had about 80 riders, the course was flat and super fast.. Halfway through the race a man decides to cross the course, the field is barreling down on him, the announcer starts screaming for the man to get off the course.. He looks at small man crossing the course and realizes the man has a white cane. I have never heard an announcer yell so loudly than that day..

    He starts screaming through the PA - BLIND MAN ON THE COURSE, over and over..

    Fortunately it was in a long straightaway, we saw him and the field parted like the red sea around him.. A friend of mine said the man stopped and had a look on his face like what the hell just passed me and then just kept on going..

    I've heard a few interesting things during a race but you never forget when the announcer yells Blind man on the course.. The only other one than would equal that is when the pack starting yelling "COOOOWWWW" Sure enough Cow right in the middle of the road during a Road race in San Luis Obispo county...

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by my58vw
    Wow I would like to know what happened... I would hate to be the rider... he looks like he feels like crap
    Dude, I would hate to be the fan. HE looks like he feels like crap!

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