Tragedy Strikes Vancouver Winter Olympic Games … Male Luger from the Former Soviet Republic of Georgia Dies After Training Crash


The Vancouver Olympic Luge track has been billed as the worlds fastest. Sadly, it is now known as the deadliest.

Their is  sad news to report from the Vancouver Winter Olympic Games. Nodar Kumaritashvili, a male luger from the former Soviet Republic of  Georgia crashed and died today during a training run. Before the opening ceremonies even started tragedy has struck the Winter Olympics.  Kumaritashvili lost control of his sled, went over the track wall and struck an unpadded steel pole near the finish line at Whistler Sliding Center. Unpadded poll, oh dear Lord what were these people thinking?


Click on pic to see crash

A men’s luger from the former Soviet republic of Georgia died Friday after a crash during training, an Olympic official with direct knowledge of the situation said. The death cast a shocking pall over the Olympics hours before the Vancouver Games were to open.

The official told The Associated Press that the International Olympic Committee received confirmation of Nodar Kumaritashvili’s death. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the 21-year-old luger’s family hadn’t been notified yet.

VIDEO can be seen here (Warning Graphic) We have dnot to link to the pics, just too graphic. They are easily found on the web. God rest this sliders soul.

Training was suspended following the terrible incident as track officials are investigating the crash. Rescue workers were at the Luger’s side within seconds providing chest compressions and mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. The 21 year old Nodar Kumaritashvili  was then quickly airlifted to a trauma center in Whistler where he would later die from his injuries.

Our sympathies go out to the family and loved ones of this Olympic athlete.

UPDATE I: Olympic Probe: Track Didn’t Cause Luger’s Death

Hmm, if the track did not cause the death of the Georgian luger, why are they making changes to it? Obviously, the IOC is playing semantics and parsing words here. It was not the track, in the sense of the sliding area that caused the sad death of Nodar Kumaritashvili, a male luger from the former Soviet Republic of  Georgia; however, it was the non-padded steel pole that did. That will eventually need to be addressed as a negligent issue in the death of the Georgian luger. 

WHISTLER, British Columbia – Fast and frightening, yes. Responsible for the death of a luger, no.

Olympic officials decided late Friday night against any major changes in the track or any delays in competition and even doubled up on the schedule in the wake of the horrifying accident that claimed the life of a 21-year-old luger from the republic of Georgia.

They said they would raise the wall where the slider flew off the track and make an unspecified “change in the ice profile” — but only as a preventative measure “to avoid that such an extremely exceptional accident could occur again.”

Posted February 12, 2010 by
Deceased, Olympics, Sports | 7 comments

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  • Comments

    7 Responses to “Tragedy Strikes Vancouver Winter Olympic Games … Male Luger from the Former Soviet Republic of Georgia Dies After Training Crash”

    1. Scared Monkeys on February 12th, 2010 8:04 pm

      How sad.

      Then again, amazingly stupid and negligent that there were not protective cushions on the steel beams. There will be a law suit on this one.

      Tragic, may this Olympic athlete rest in peace.


    2. TheCoach on February 12th, 2010 9:18 pm
    3. Tamikosmom on February 13th, 2010 1:03 am

      We just finished watching on cable the opening 2010 Winter Olympic ceremonies that were held at B.C. Stadium in downtown Vancouver. There was a minute silence by 60,000 present in honor of Nodar Kumaritashvili.



      Updated February 12, 2010
      After Tragedy, Somber Mood for Olympic Opening Ceremonies

    4. Greg the Mongoose on February 13th, 2010 7:11 am

      You go out of control and have pillars of steel to greet you. I have trained on ice. If the ice temperature is not right you go airborne. Choppy ice? Haystack? Air cushion. This is not a freak accident. The sleds have a higher rate of injury.

    5. Just Bearly on February 13th, 2010 8:50 am

      An IOC review says it was pilot error and all the events at the track will go on, with just minor modifications to the ice and the track walls. Many of the outdoor events there are in jeopardy of being held in unsafe conditions to compete, with rain and soggy snow in the Pacific Northwest. Do not jeopardize athlete safety in the name of the games by forcing these events to go on. Vancouver should have had a better contingency plan for back up locations in the interior where its drier and better snow conditions can be found. I’m afraid its all about TV revenue and profits before athlete safety.

    6. WTF on February 15th, 2010 9:21 am

      what were these people thinkin leaving the athletes exposed to such danger???? It is common sense that not having a taller wall there someone is going to get hurt really bad. You don’t need a PHD to know that every race on that ice track is a potential death race for the athetes. Most of the times they want everything perfect in detail for a glorious start that they neglect to take care of the safety issues. Each and everyone that took part on building that particular track wanted someone to die. R.I.P. Nodar Kumaritashvili…

    7. Dolf on February 17th, 2010 7:06 am


      Ofcourse the IOC doesn’t take responsibility..that would be a miracle.

      you 100% correct about revenue and profits
      look at the ice soap with the speedskating and shorttrack

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