Yesterday I heard about the death of Georgia’s Nodar Kumaritashvili. He was doing a training run on the luge when he lost control, went airborne, and slammed into a pole at a speed of approximately 90 mph. There is video, but I will not link to it. You can find it if you want. It is somewhat disturbing.
And how would I know that the video is disturbing? Because NBC, while crying their crocodile tears, showed this guy dying over and over and over last night. I had my children in the living room to have a peaceful night of watching the Opening Ceremonies and had to scramble for the remote while NBC kept showing the replay of the unfortunate athlete’s death.
Is that not cruel? I would be absolutely furious if a network was showing the death of a member of my family over and over like it were some sort of advertisement. I know they are there to report the news, and I would maybe understand if they showed it once, but to have it on a continuous replay reel is just disgusting, imho.
I would imagine that the family of the athlete will be lawyering up as well. I have no clue about Canadian law but I am going to guess that the IOC, the Vancouver Games Committee and others will be sued for some sort of negligence in the design of the track. Many have already noted that the steel poles that the luger crashed into were in sort of an odd place – but how do you know that until you have an accident? Many lawyers are probably looking into track designs worldwide and deaths on those tracks as we speak.
I have to sign a release form whenever I do a run, or do Muay Thai, or participate in an organized bicycle ride. Olympic athletes, I bet, sign a release form before they can even get near the sledding run, or ski hill, or ice arena, or anything else. If he signed a release, wouldn’t that free everyone from any sort of lawsuit? Maybe a better question is – shouldn’t it?
Every accident cannot be prevented. I feel bad for the guy who died on the luge run, but this is a dangerous activity by definition. I guess my question for the readers is that if you sign a release form to engage in something like a luge run, and you can see the track and what it has to offer and you die from that activity, is your family owed anything? Or is that just the way it goes? I would vote with the latter.