Safety questioned after X Games accidents

Jan. 30, 2013 at 2:58 PM

ASPEN, Colo., Jan. 30 (UPI) -- Caleb Moore's snowmobile crash and injuries at the Winter X Games in Aspen, Colo., have left some participants questioning the safety of their sports.

The annual winter competition, this year at Aspen's Buttermilk ski area, has had a somber feel since Thursday's accident in which Moore, 25, crashed his snowmobile in freestyle competition, The Denver Post reported Wednesday.

Sunday it was announced his condition worsened as a cardiac injury led to a brain complication. He remained in critical condition in a Grand Junction, Colo., hospital, the newspaper said.

A New Zealand skier, Rose Battersby, 19, sustained a fractured back while practicing Sunday.

"When is enough enough?" asked Paul Thacker, 36, of Anchorage, Alaska, back at the X Games to compete in adaptive snowmobile racing after a 2010 accident left him a paraplegic. "It's kind of like you tell me I can't do something and I'll show you how I can. It's how we are wired."

Thacker formerly held the world record for jumping his snowmobile 301 feet.

Assessing and mitigating risk is a big part of the X Games, the newspaper noted, as athletes raise the bar with gravity-defying artistry once thought impossible.

"These are inherent risks in the sport, and I wouldn't do it if I didn't believe in myself," said Canadian medal-winner Kaya Turski. "Still, it is a fine line, and I've crossed that line a few times."

Related UPI Stories
Latest Headlines
Trending News
Steve Kerr takes leave from Golden State Warriors for back rehab
Hall of Famer Warren Sapp avoids jail in plea deal
Report: Miami Marlins interview Bo Porter for manager's job
Chicago Bears: Jay Cutler practices, might return in Week 4 from hamstring injury