Chicago Marathon organizers activate emergency response contingency plan after soaring heat
| 10.09.2007 | 06:57:02 | Views: 2991 | ID:
October 9 '07: Chicago Marathon officials activated their emergency response contingency plan on Sunday after soaring temperatures hospitalized hundreds of people and caused organizers to cancel the race - a first for the city, the Chicago Tribune reported.
Though confusion and criticism were evident, race officials said their cooperation with emergency response teams in the area, and their communication was the best they could have done. One man with a prior heart condition died during the marathon.The New York Times reported, "More than 300 people were picked up by ambulances along the course, many of them suffering from nausea, heart palpitations and dizziness from the stifling heat, fire officials said. ... As runners began falling ill on the course, city authorities sought help from suburban fire departments in case they ran out of ambulances. Fire hydrants were opened, creating an enormous spray along a downtown street. Fifteen city buses, air conditioned to the coolest levels, were sent out as aid stations." The LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon Executive Race Director Carey Pinkowski told the Tribune that the emergency response plan was activated after race officials spoke with medical officials. Pinkowski said, "Is there anything we could have done better? No. ... We anticipated the weather I'm very proud of the way things went." Marianne Caponi a spokeswoman for the race organizers told the Times, "race officials had prepared for the weather, conferring until minutes before the start. They delivered 205,000 extra servings of water and Gatorade and added ice at eight aid stations."
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