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Drag-racing crash in Maros kills seven, twenty injured MAROS - The death toll from a drag-racing crash in Maros, South Sulawesi, on Sunday has risen to seven, with 20 people injured. Two cars had been battling it out to the finish line when they collided, swerving off the road and into the crowd. The dead have been identified as chief Brig. Dani Syahputra, Andi Susanto, Atika Sandra, Aris, Taufik, Labbaik and Syahril. Five of them died Sunday at Wahidin Soedirohusodo Hospital.

Sixteen of the injured people are being treated at that hospital and four at another hospital in Salewangeng, Maros. One of them suffered serious head injuries and is in critical condition. The incident took place at 6 p.m.. Drivers Gelang Marevan and Ruslan lost control of their speeding vehicles, which veered into the spectator area. A number of spectators were thrown several meters by the force of the collision. One man landed on the roof of a junior high school.

Dani, a policeman who was assigned to oversee the event, was hit and dragged along by one of the cars. He and three other people died at the scene. Firman, a witness, said the crash had come without warning because drag-racing was all about going fast. As of Monday, Maros Police had questioned three other witnesses, namely Awaluddin Jamal, the chairman of the organizing committee; Soridin, the chairman of the race; and Gelang Marevan, the son of Trikora Military Commander Maj. Gen. George Toisutta.

No suspects have been named. "We are working with the Indonesian Motorsports Association (IMI) and people from Hasanuddin University in Makassar," said Maros Police chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Bambang Trianto. Awaluddin said there had been 149 participants in the race from clubs across South Sulawesi. It was Maros' first taste of drag-racing, though the IMI regularly holds similar events elsewhere.

Based on The Jakarta Post's observations, the race was held on a main thoroughfare amid offices, schools, shops and residences. The length of the lanes were about 400 meters with 200 m for the race and another 200 m for braking. The width of the lanes was 10 m. There was no separator between the location of the spectators and the racing lanes, only a line of bamboo on the ground. He said that even though the venue was not suitable and did not meet IMI standards, the association had approved it.



Posted in Accidents @ 11 July 2006 08:50 CET by Jeroen · 'Blog' RSS feed · permalink






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