Quick Response Debated In San Francisco Race Death

Firefighters were "appalled" that no one from the event's medical staff was on hand.


 
 

JUSTIN BERTON, The San Francisco Chronicle | | Thursday, February 10, 2011


The owner of a company that produced a foot race in Golden Gate Park, during which an Orinda man died Sunday, says reports from the city's Fire Department that no one on the event staff tended to the dying man are "misleading."

Dave Rhody, owner of RhodyCo Productions, said two members of a medical team he hired for the event were at the scene "within minutes," but that resuscitation attempts were already under way.

On Tuesday, Fire Department spokeswoman Mindy Talmadge said three city firefighters who ran in the half marathon assisted in the resuscitation attempt of Peter Hass, 36, for 22 minutes as they waited for a city ambulance to arrive.

Talmadge said the firefighters were "appalled" that no one from the event's medical staff was on hand to treat the victim.

In a written statement, Rhody said his company confirmed that a medical doctor who crossed the finish line 13 seconds after Hass collapsed, was the first person to administer CPR. Within 60 seconds, a RhodyCo supervisor was on the scene, called 911 and directed crowd control. The supervisor was followed within minutes by two medical personnel hired for the event, Rhody said.

Rhody said that a third member of the hired medical staff rushed a defibrillator to the scene, but he did not know how long it took to arrive.

Talmadge confirmed Tuesday that the firefighters received the lifesaving device from someone during the effort, but did not know where it came from.

On Wednesday, Talmadge said she could not comment further on the incident or respond to Rhody's version of events, citing an investigation launched by the city's Department of Emergency Services.

Peter Hass died in the Kaiser Permanente Half Marathon.



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