The 2006 Tour of Britain cycle race - An analysis of the management of participant and spectator safety

Leigh Thompson

Abstract


This paper analyses the 2006 edition of the Tour of Britain cycle race and considers how the safety risks to participants and spectators were managed, both in the planning and execution of the event. The 2006 Tour has been chosen principally because it was marked by a number of serious safety incidents including a motorcycle crash on the final stage which injured a number of spectators. These incidents – and their underlying causes – highlight the difference between the identification of risks in advance of an event and their management in a ‘live’ environment. In addition the 2006 Tour raises a number of interesting legal issues regarding the liability of event organisers and governing bodies under both statute and common law negligence – in particular how the relevant duties of care are, in certain circumstances, capable of being applied to event organisers and governing bodies. Given the increasing popularity of road cycling in the UK and the growing number of events taking place on public roads, this is a legal area that will be worth watching closely.

Keywords: Event Management, Risk Management, Safety, Spectators, Negligence, Health & Safety, Occupiers’ Liability, Road Cycling


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