Monday, September 24, 2007

John force wreck, injured & taken to Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas

John Force was taken to Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas on Sunday afternoon after he crashed into Kenny Bernstein’s car across the finish line in a second-round elimination pass at the O’Reilly Fall Nationals at Texas Motorplex.

Dr. Dwight Shewchuk, a EMS official with the NHRA who attended to Force before he was flown out via helicopter to the hospital, said Force broke both his legs and injured his right hand. The injuries are not believed to be life threatening. He will be examined, and further details are expected to be released later Sunday.

“Those will require extensive work up and treatment,” Dr. Shewchuk said. “Although he was alert and conscious throughout the whole thing, he’s demonstrating some evidence of concussion at least in that he was asking the same question over and over. His vital signs are stable.”

Bernstein said he was fine except for a “little bit of a headache” that occurred when he first stopped. Bernstein said his head was bouncing back and forth to each side of the rollcage. But after the death of Funny Car driver Eric Medlen in testing in March, Force implemented some changes in the Funny Cars to add padding to the rollcage area.

“If that had been the old pads, I’d have had a lot worse headache,” Bernstein said.

Bernstein said his car was hugging the middle line but never went over it. As soon as he crossed the finish line, he saw Force’s car heading toward him. Then all Bernstein could see was parts of his car and then Force’s car as he drove through them.

“That took just milliseconds and after that I saw John’s car hit the wall really, really hard,” Bernstein said.

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