Formula 1 | Sainz fire in Austria: Commissioners explain

After the fire he suffered in the race during the Austrian Grand Prix, Carlos Sainz explained that he thought the intervention of the marshals was very long. Unjustly accused according to them, they decided to publish a press release explaining why they had taken so long to try to put out the fire of the Ferrari F1-75.

“After the terrible accident of Jules Bianchi in 2014, FIA rules on recoveries and interventions on the track have been drastically strengthened” says the commissioners’ statement.

“Interventions are only allowed after instructions from the race management. On the one hand, this naturally increases the safety of the drivers and stewards, but on the other hand, it has the disadvantage that the interventions take a little longer. time “.

In addition to this mandatory precaution, the marshals explain that the location of the car, as well as other factors, contributed to the difficulty of intervention, when the car was not completely stopped and was reversing, on fire. towards the track.

“Several unfortunate circumstances occurred. The place where Sainz parked the Ferrari was not visible from the police station stop. They received radio instructions to go to the car with fire extinguishers, and when they saw the situation they made the decision to call the fire truck “.

“This decision must have been made in seconds and, in retrospect, it was absolutely correct. If you remember the accident of [Romain] Grosjean, in a situation like this, hand-held fire extinguishers are absolutely not enough. “

The commissioner did not “run away”

So it was seen that the commissioner was stepping back, suggesting he was running away from the problem. In reality, his criterion was not to try the impossible with his fire extinguisher, and he made the decision to return to the station, to call an intervention truck.

“As a result, the fire extinguisher went out and the car was abandoned, which caused that unfortunate television image of the commissioner ‘running away.’ Another problem was that Sainz, understandably, got nervous inside the vehicle and he let go of the brakes. too early. “

“The cove had to be pushed below the rolling vehicle, which of course made it very difficult to assemble. However, due to the resistance of the lime, the vehicle went inwards and stop. at the railing. Then the The fire could be extinguished with a few blows of fire extinguisher “.

“Of course, in retrospect, when you look at TV images and recordings from tracking cameras, you find things that need to be improved. We will also talk about it internally and with our people.

Sainz would have been protected if he had not left

The commissioners also remind that fires are not common situations, and that they require very quick reactions: “But in this exceptional situation, as a fire is not a daily occurrence for us either, the marshals in general have reacted well.”

“We had a fire truck on the scene in 30 seconds, which would have controlled a fire that was spreading rapidly. Since the Grosjean accident, it’s very important for us to have a lot of firepower extinguishing immediately to protect- the pilot in the best possible way “.

“There was already another emergency vehicle and a third was traveling. Even if Sainz hadn’t gotten out of the vehicle alone, we could have protected him in the best way possible.”

“We are a team of engine enthusiasts who sacrifice their free time to train and exercise to do everything possible for safety on the track at these events. We will also take advantage of this incident as an opportunity to improve. Again.”

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