Motorsport Safety & Rescue - April 2009 Report

The Motorsport Safety & Rescue team have just completed their biggest event to date, with 16 crews working for seven days on Targa Tasmania.

This is the biggest resource event that MSR have done, and MSR’s Geoff Becker says that it was a great event and that, from their perspective, everything went to plan.

Honda's Civic Type R at Targa TasmaniaTarga Tasmania began with a pre-event shakedown on April 27, and went through until Sunday, May 3. Over the seven-day period MSR attended a number of incidents, only four of which required patient transports.

The most serious of these accidents involved leading competitors, Steven Jones/Ruari Soutar Dawson (Nissan GTR), and Kevin Weeks/Bec Crunkhorn (Lamborghini Gallardo).

The injured competitors were transported to hospital, but are now on the road to recovery.

“The event went exceptionally well for MSR,” Becker said. “The new communication systems worked extremely well, and the improvements to the Next G phone network made our jobs a lot easier.”

Kevin Weeks’ accident on the final day required the crew to be extricated from the vehicle after a high-speed crash that saw both driver and co-driver trapped in the car.

However, because the injuries to the driver were not serious, the MSR team took the slowest option to remove the occupants.

“The crew were in no risk of further injury, so there were no time rush to get them out of the car,” explained Becker. “We decided to take the option that would cause the least damage to the car.

“Had there been a rush, we would have cut the roof off the car, but because of the situation we were able to take our time. This meant removing a door and causing the least possible damage to the car.”

For Targa Tasmania, MSR had a use of an ICV vehicle from Honda, and a rescue vehicle from Toyota, which Becker says they were very grateful for.

“It’s difficult to complete our job successfully without the right equipment, and the support of both Honda and Toyota is invaluable,” he added.

MSR’s busy May continues this week when Becker and his team head to the Sunshine Coast for the fourth round of the Australian Rally Championship – Rally Queensland. The event is also the second round of the Asia-Pacific Rally Championship.