NASCAR's Steve O'Donnell on safety: "We are never satisfied"

NASCAR on Saturday outlined the timeline of events of Ryan Newman’s vicious wreck at Daytona last weekend and detailed its efforts underway to investigate the accident.

NASCAR's Steve O'Donnell on safety: "We are never satisfied"

“You’ve heard us say this many times, that safety is our primary responsibility,” said Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR’s executive vice president and chief racing development officer.

“Everything that goes on at the R&D Center on a daily basis is put in place for a reason. This is our job. This is what we do, and you’ve got the 40 drivers in the garage area who expect us to do this every day.”

Newman suffered what were described at the time as “serious but non-life-threatening” injuries in a violent crash on the last lap of Monday’s Daytona 500 after his No. 6 car went airborne and was struck in the driver’s side door upon landing on the track.

The car skidded on its roof on fire before coming to a stop near the end of the frontstretch tri-oval. Newman was treated and released from Halifax Medical Center on Wednesday morning.

Crash of Ryan Newman, Roush Fenway Racing, Ford Mustang Koch Industries

Crash of Ryan Newman, Roush Fenway Racing, Ford Mustang Koch Industries

Photo by: Matthew T. Thacker / NKP / Motorsport Images

O’Donnell provided the following timeline of the rescue response:

19 seconds after Newman’s car came to a rest on the track – the “tool truck,” which includes the firefighter with a fire extinguisher.

33 seconds after the car came to a rest – one of the trauma doctors assigned to the team arrived at the car.

35 seconds after the car came to rest – a paramedic entered the vehicle.

For the next 3 ½ minutes, doctors and paramedics attended to Newman.

4 minutes, 5 seconds after the car came to a rest – decision made to roll the car over to upright position.

6 minutes, 56 seconds after the car came to rest – the car was upright. Extrication of the driver began and a doctor continued to attend to Newman.

15 minutes, 40 seconds after the car came to a rest – Extrication of the driver was completed and Newman was transported by ambulance to Halifax Medical Center.

Crash of Ryan Newman, Roush Fenway Racing, Ford Mustang Koch Industries

Crash of Ryan Newman, Roush Fenway Racing, Ford Mustang Koch Industries

Photo by: Matthew T. Thacker / NKP / Motorsport Images

“During this entire time, doctors and paramedics were attending to Ryan, except for during the car rollover,” O’Donnell said. “The first responders performed their jobs as they were trained. The training systems all worked as were designed.

“We are never satisfied with what took place and we will learn as much as possible and implement those changes, if there are any, as soon as possible.”

NASCAR declined to discuss any information related to Newman’s condition or injuries at the time of the incident, citing privacy laws.

“We cannot and we will not disclose the medical response that may disclose Ryan’s personal medical information,” O’Donnell said.

From the editor, also read:

NASCAR officials did say that Newman would have to be medically cleared by his medical team before he race again and there was not timetable for his return.

The NASCAR review of Newman’s wreck began the day of the incident with the collection of data, video and photographs.

Both Newman and driver Corey LaJoie’s cars were taken to NASCAR’s research and development center in Concord, N.C., and officials began going over them on Tuesday.

Newman will also be an integral part of the NASCAR review of the accident, O’Donnell said, but the sanctioning body has not yet had the opportunity to talk with him extensively about it.

Looking into airborne crashes

Among the areas O’Donnell said NASCAR would likely be looking prior to the next superspeedway race at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway were lift-off speeds (an area NASCAR has been studying for years), speeds in general and the racing procedures.

O’Donnell said he was satisfied with how NASCAR’s overtime and caution procedures don’t need to change.

O’Donnell said there was no celebrating Newman’s speedy recovery but there is satisfaction that NASCAR’s safety efforts worked as intended.

“There is always something we’re going to learn,” he said. “Our job is to get the races in, make them exciting for the fans and not have those kinds of incidents. So, if we can improve on that, we’ll do that.”

Crash of Ryan Newman, Roush Fenway Racing, Ford Mustang Koch Industries

Crash of Ryan Newman, Roush Fenway Racing, Ford Mustang Koch Industries

Photo by: Nigel Kinrade / NKP / Motorsport Images

shares
comments
Jimmie Johnson leads final practice at Las Vegas
Previous article

Jimmie Johnson leads final practice at Las Vegas

Next article

Las Vegas Cup qualifying rained out; Kyle Busch on pole

Las Vegas Cup qualifying rained out; Kyle Busch on pole
The ex-F1 driver taking on NASCAR with a new team Prime

The ex-F1 driver taking on NASCAR with a new team

Saddled with uncompetitive Minardi machinery, Tarso Marques didn't manage to score points in his three partial seasons of Formula 1. But now the Brazilian has the chance to show what he can do in NASCAR, and explains the story of his comeback with new Cup Series entrant Team Stange

NASCAR Cup
Apr 13, 2022
The early benefits and challenges of NASCAR's Next Gen car Prime

The early benefits and challenges of NASCAR's Next Gen car

NASCAR’s new stock car generation is encouraging an influx of fresh blood into its top tier. But there are concerns that parts are in short supply as the entire paddock tries to build up stocks at the same time

NASCAR Cup
Feb 22, 2022
How Penske's rookie sensation opened NASCAR's new era in style Prime

How Penske's rookie sensation opened NASCAR's new era in style

After holding his nerve and hip-checking his teammate on the run to the line, Austin Cindric made a perfect start to life as a full-timer in the NASCAR Cup Series by winning the Daytona 500. Here's how the Penske Ford man emerged first across the line in the first points-scoring race for the much-anticipated Next Generation cars

NASCAR Cup
Feb 21, 2022
Six key themes to follow in the 2022 NASCAR Cup season Prime

Six key themes to follow in the 2022 NASCAR Cup season

There are plenty of uncertainties ahead of the 2022 NASCAR Cup season as an all-new fleet of cars take to the track for the first time. Ahead of this weekend's Daytona 500, our experts explain what you need to know

NASCAR Cup
Feb 17, 2022
How NASCAR had to learn a harsh lesson ahead of Next Gen arrival Prime

How NASCAR had to learn a harsh lesson ahead of Next Gen arrival

The NASCAR Cup kicks off with the Daytona 500 this weekend, but a major engine overhaul and a subsequent mountain of work has been required to be ready for the arrival of the Next Gen cars.

NASCAR Cup
Feb 16, 2022
How Larson took the long way round to NASCAR Cup glory Prime

How Larson took the long way round to NASCAR Cup glory

From villain to hero, Kyle Larson had to reach his lifelong goal the hard way and go through a very public shaming after a ban for using a racial slur, but his talents shone long before his name grabbed the headlines...

NASCAR Cup
Nov 10, 2021
How NASCAR is gearing up for its "biggest change" in 2022 Prime

How NASCAR is gearing up for its "biggest change" in 2022

It’s not just Formula 1 that’s set for upheaval in 2022, as the NASCAR Cup series adopts its Next Gen cars that will cast any in-built advantages aside and require teams to adopt a totally new way of operating. Far more than just a change of machinery, the new cars amount to a shift in NASCAR's core philosophy

NASCAR Cup
Oct 12, 2021
Why Bubba Wallace’s Talladega win is such a big moment for NASCAR Prime

Why Bubba Wallace’s Talladega win is such a big moment for NASCAR

Bubba Wallace claimed his maiden NASCAR Cup Series at Talladega on Monday to become the first Black victor in the category since Wendell Scott in 1963. Both Wallace and Scott had faced obstacles and racism in their paths to their breakthrough wins, and NASCAR is trying to put it right with its range of diversity programmes

NASCAR Cup
Oct 5, 2021