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Violent crash injures 28,two critically, at end of Daytona Nationwide race UPDATE #2 Good news - reports say the 2 fans in critical condition have now been stabilized w/ no life-threatening injuries.

02/23/13 At least 28 people (more than we originally reported) were injured, including two critically, after debris flew into the grandstands after a 12-car crash on the final lap of NASCAR’s DRIVE4COPD 300 Nationwide race at Daytona International Speedway,

Kyle Larson's Clorox machine goes up into the fence
CIA Stock Photo
A violent 12-car crash at the end of the DRIVE4COPD 300 sent a tire and other debris flying over the grandstand fence at Daytona International Speedway, injuring at least 12 bystanders, some critically, among the crowds watching the race from the grandstands.

A Halifax Health Medical Center official confirmed just before 6 p.m. that 11 spectators are being treated in the hospital's emergency room and two of them are critically injured. Four others are on trauma alert and five are being treated as non-trauma cases, the official said.

Volusia County spokesman Dave Byron said he understood 12 patients were taken to Halifax. Additional spectators may also have been injured, but not taken to the hospital.

Dozens of safety workers went into the stands and carried several people out on stretchers to a line of at least eight ambulances waiting below and behind the stands. Safety workers appeared to carry patients from at least two sections of the grandstands on the upper deck and from a section of the lower deck.

At 5:30 p.m., NASCAR spokesman Kerry Tharp said "we are continuing to assess the situation, taking care of those involved."

An eyewitness to the scene outside the grandstands shortly after the crash said people were "in hysterics" and saying there were "multiple injuries."

The wreck happened in front of the Heintz brothers, who were looking at classic cars parked in the FanZone.

“I’ve been to 12 500s, at least as many 400s, and I’ve never seen anything like that,” said Clayton Heintz of Daytona Beach. “It’s always in the back of my mind that something like that could happen.” News Journal Online

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