The safety aspects of F1 are ever being revised and improved, not only for
the drivers but for those who work at the circuits as well as the fans. The
beginning of last season was marred by the death of marshal Graham Beveridge
at the Melbourne Grand Prix after he was struck by a flying tyre which came
off in a crash between Ralf Schumacher and Jacques Villeneuve. The previous
year there was another marshal death at Monza; Paolo Gislimburti was also
struck by a flying tyre after a huge crash involving six cars at the second
chicane on the opening lap.
As a result safety measures have been increased: in Melbourne the fences
have been raised around the circuit, with the added precaution of double
layers where there are gaps in the fencing to allow access to the track.
Emphasis on marshal and spectator protection is every bit as important as
the safety of the drivers. With the Malaysian Grand Prix just a few days
away the safety rules at the Sepang circuit are also being increased.
Marshals have been told to only attend cars that are at a standstill and
eigh*** extra safety fences have been erected around the track.
Jeff Amin, clerk of the course, explained the precautions and the training
marshals have undertaken.
"The marshals are now more comfortable because the emphasis is on their
safety. Their reaction this time will be slower but certainly safer. The FIA
officials visited us last month and asked us to put up the fences as
barriers for the marshals along the track. Previously, the marshals stood
behind smaller crash barriers. The marshals have undergone three weeks of
training. They are well prepared for their tasks during the race and they
will do a good job."
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