Wheldon’s death attributed to a “perfect storm”

Credit: LAT Photo USA

IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard and executive Brian Barnhart announced today the initial findings into the cause of Dan Wheldon’s death at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Wheldon was killed during a 15-car accident on Lap 11 of the final race of the season when his head hit a post in the catchfence at the track, creating the "non-survivable injury" to the two-time Indianapolis 500 winner.

The report finds several factors contributed to what became a "perfect storm," and no one reason was the inciting factor.

IndyCar found it is "impossible to determine with certainty that the result would have been any different if one or more of the factors did not exist."

The race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway had a season-high 34 cars and was held on a high-banked oval. Bernard says the size of the field and the banking itself were not solely responsible for the accident.

It was announced last week that the series would not be returning to the track in 2012, which comes as a sigh of relief to drivers who were weary of the facility to begin with.

Wheldon's death marked the most recent death in IndyCar. Paul Dana was killed in 2006 during a practice session at Homestead-Miami Speedway. In 2012, IndyCar will be unveiling their new and improved car design with enhanced safety features; fittingly the car was tested by Wheldon during development.
Wheldon’s death attributed to a “perfect storm” Wheldon’s death attributed to a “perfect storm” Reviewed by Admin on Thursday, December 15, 2011 Rating: 5