The 62nd annual Daytona 500 had a scary ending to its annual race. On the final lap, racer Ryan Newman was flipped in his vehicle and turned upside down. Newman’s car was also struck by another car, causing it to burst into flames.
Newman was immediately rushed to the hospital, where he was deemed in critical condition. By Tuesday, he was able to communicate, and on Wednesday, Newman walked out of the hospital with his daughters.
It’s a miracle that Newman survived his ordeal, as the nature of the crash was horrible to look at. NASCAR has come a long way in terms of safety for their drivers. Ever since the death of driver Dale Earnhardt 19 years ago, NASCAR has come up with new technology to keep drivers secure. Some of these safety devices include mandated head and neck restraints, called a HANS device, and energy-absorbing walls, called SAFER barriers.
There’s still always the risk when you get into the car though. Despite this fact, drivers have been staying safe because of NASCAR’s efforts. Since Earnhardt’s accident in 2001, there has only been three deaths in NASCAR due to crashes. NASCAR is continuing to study and track crashes, hoping to keep these racers on the track. Newman’s recovery is something everyone, both fan and non-fan of the sport, should celebrate. What could have been another tragic loss in the sports world resulted in the story of a man who survived against all odds.