DAYTONA BEACH, FL (WOFL) – Two fans struck by debris at a NASCAR race on Saturday have retained legal representation. According to WOFL in Orlando, the Morgan and Morgan law firm is representing the two victims.
The Daytona 500 ran as scheduled Sunday despite a jaw-dropping crash a day earlier that flung debris into the stands at the Daytona International Speedway.
According to CNN at least 28 fans were injured when more than a dozen cars piled up in the final curve of the Nationwide Series Drive4COPD 300 in Daytona Beach, Florida, on Saturday. Some of the debris went over a 22-foot-high fence that was built in 2010, and some of it went through holes as the fence shredded when a car slammed into it and bounced back onto the track.
“At 8 a.m., we met with NASCAR, we reviewed all of the repairs that we made last evening,” speedway president Joie Chitwood told reporters Sunday morning. “We worked late into the evening and are prepared to go racing today.”
Some of the fans who were sitting in that area returned for Sunday’s race, which began just after 1 p.m. ET, Chitwood said. Jimmie Johnson won the race, edging out Dale Earnhardt Jr. and a host of others down the stretch.
The wreck occurred when several closely packed cars were jostling for position at top speeds of about 175 mph. They got tangled up, setting off a dangerous chain reaction that ensnared several vehicles.
Reigning Sprint Cup champ Brad Keselowski, who later told CNN on Saturday that he and others were simply “going for the win,” was among those involved, while Tony Stewart somehow emerged unscathed and won the race.
Driver Kyle Larson’s vehicle ended up flying into a fence that separates the track from spectators. The car broke into pieces, including tires and a fiery engine.
Larson walked away from the crash, even after the front part of his No. 32 car was gone. He and the other nine drivers involved told reporters that they were checked at a medical tent on the Daytona infield and released.
Some pieces of the shredded debris flew into the barrier, while others got into the stands — some of it reaching the second level.
Chitwood said the fence had been replaced after a similar incident at Talladega in which a car hit the fence and seven fans were injured.
A video posted on YouTube shows a cloud of debris flying into stands and one man gasping, “Oh, my God.” A tire rests on one seat, as a man frantically waves and yells to get the attention of paramedics.
Afterward, several spectators could be seen lying down after apparently suffering injuries. About 10 ambulances lined up on the track, with some first responders carrying stretchers.
Fourteen fans were treated at an on-site medical facility, and 14 others were transported to area hospitals, Chitwood told reporters.
“I’m just hoping everyone is OK,” Keselowski said. “As drivers, we assume the risk. But fans do not.”