‘Going to be safe’ – NASCAR outlines safety measures to race

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              FILE - In this Sept. 2, 2016, file photo, workers walk along the grandstands in the rain at Darlington Raceway after weather forced NASCAR to call off qualifying for the Sprint Cup and XFinity series auto races. NASCAR says it will resume its season without fans present starting May 17 at Darlington Raceway in South Carolina. (AP Photo/Terry Renna, File)
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CHARLOTTE (AP) — NASCAR has put together a safety plan it believes will allow racing to resume. The stock car series plans to do it without spectators, tight social distancing regulations and only essential personnel.

“We’re an outdoor sport, we do have drivers with helmets, we are in race cars,” said NASCAR executive Steve O’Donnell. “There are some unique things about our sport that we did feel like provided us the opportunity to get back if we could, where we knew we were going to be safe.”

The series will not be testing for the new coronavirus and a test won’t be required to make the roster list to enter the facilities in Darlington, South Carolina, and Concord, North Carolina. Still, there are strong health guidelines in place:

— Teams are asked to self monitor all employees who will be on their roster lists for five days before they arrive. They must also complete a questionnaire and will be temperature checked at the track. Cloth face masks will be required for everyone in the infield and the entire facility will be used for spacing, meanings one series will use all the garages and motorhomes will be spread throughout the infield.

— Temperatures will be randomly taken throughout the event. Symptomatic patients will be removed and given medical attention if needed. Exiting after a race will be staggered, with more random temperature checks. Teams are being asked to disinfect as needed and haulers might be sealed to prevent them from being opened between shop and track.

— Pit road crew members will wear a fireproof sock mask that will go from their nose to below the chin or they can wear a face screen from above the eyes to below the chin. Spotters will be spaced around the speedways.

— NASCAR is asking teams and participants to contact trace and keep a log of people they have been in contact with. It will provide the ability to notify those needed to isolate for 14 days because they’d been in contact with someone who had tested positive. NASCAR said it was working on tracing software.