Macau Grand Prix | Secretary Tam says safety precautions are standard

Sophia Flörsch

While announcing the closing of the 65th Macau Grand Prix yesterday, Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture Alexis Tam stressed that all safety precautions during this year’s event were in line with the guidelines issued by the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) and that practice would continue in future in order to guarantee the safety of race competitors and the public.

Tam was specifically referring to an accident during the final hours of the Grand Prix yesterday that saw 17-year-old driver Sophia Flörsch’s single-seater car tear through the barrier and strike a photography bunker. Five people were reportedly injured in the accident, including Flörsch, and all were admitted to the hospital yesterday for treatment though none are in a life-threatening condition.

“There was no life-threatening injury,” said Tam yesterday. “I heard that the female driver may need to undergo an operation […] but it is not life-threatening.”

Flörsch was diagnosed with a spinal fracture, but is conscious and her vital signs are stable. She wrote on social media last night that she is “fine but will be going into surgery tomorrow morning.”

Meanwhile, Japanese driver Sho Tsuboi, whose car was struck by Flörsch’s during the accident, was diagnosed with lumbar pain and scheduled for future examination. Both drivers were officially declared not fit to race.

Two photographers and a race marshall also suffered injuries during the accident and were admitted to hospital.

The race marshall was diagnosed with face lacerations, an abrasion at his upper abdomen wall and a bone fracture. A Japanese photographer was diagnosed with concussion, while a Chinese photographer suffered liver laceration.

According to the chief medical officer of the Macau Grand Prix event, the five individuals involved in the accident were taken to hospital for treatment, with the Japanese driver having been discharged last night.

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