Dakar Rally: the driver injured in the explosion of his car will be repatriated to France and security was increased

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Security measures were tightened in Saudi Arabia.  In the aerial image, Sébastien Loeb (REUTERS / Hamad I Mohammed)
Security measures were tightened in Saudi Arabia. In the aerial image, Sébastien Loeb (REUTERS / Hamad I Mohammed)

This Friday the confusing fact was leaked in the press room of the Dakar Rally 2022 in which a pilot was hospitalized after suffering the fire in his car the day before in front of the Donatello Hotel in the city of Jeddah, which hosted the service park and from where the race began this Saturday with the 19-kilometer prologue. Amaury Sport Organization (ASO), the company that organizes the competition, issued a statement where it expanded information and advised that “There was a significant increase in security.”

The press release that the French firm sent to the media indicated that the car was carrying six people and registered a “sudden explosion of which the origin is still unknown.” It was reported that except for the pilot, who was driving the car and suffered injuries to his leg, the rest were able to escape unscathed.

After his hospitalization, the pilot who has not yet been identified will be repatriated to France and the local police have already started the pertinent investigations, although they discarded the variables of an act done on purpose, rejecting the version that circulated about an alleged attack. This Friday Infobae He asked a source from the ASO press area and stated that they would expand the information when they had news.

However, ASO advised that security will be increased in the places where the caravan passes and is installed in order to avoid any inconvenience. In fact, this Saturday, before the French firm informed the media, a large number of patrol cars were seen circulating around the Hail service park.

The boarding school driver is a Frenchman from the auto category.  Illustrative image (REUTERS / Hamad I Mohammed)
The boarding school driver is a Frenchman from the auto category. Illustrative image (REUTERS / Hamad I Mohammed)

It should be clarified that this is the first part that the organization made reach the media, since the one that leaked on Friday in the press room was sent only to the pilots on Thursday night.

Official statement to all accredited persons

Following last Thursday’s press release about an event involving a service car on December 29 in Jeddah, here is additional information. The car was carrying 6 passengers. Five of them escaped the vehicle unharmed and only the driver of the car suffered serious leg injuries and had to undergo surgery.

His condition is improving and his repatriation to France is being prepared. His vehicle was suddenly stopped by a sudden explosion, the origin of which is still unknown at this stage. The Saudi police immediately went to the scene and began their investigations, ruling out all possibilities, including that of a malicious act.

Given this uncertainty and as a precautionary measure, we have decided with the Saudi authorities to reinforce all the security measures that were already in force in previous years and have been renewed for this third edition of the Dakar in Saudi Arabia. Therefore, the entire route, hotels and camps will benefit from a significant increase in security. In this context, we ask you to observe the utmost vigilance.

The Dakar organization.

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