Petty Holdings cited in instructor death at Walt Disney World Speedway

Petty Holdings has been cited with two workplace-safety violations and $7,000 in fines after the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) concluded its investigation into the death of Exotic Driving Experience instructor Gary Terry.

Terry was an instructor at the Walt Disney World Speedway and was killed in April when the car he was riding in crashed into the end of a guardrail. OSHA said there were a few things that Petty Holdings could have done to reduce the danger of the track, including extending the guardrail around the whole track, installing impact barriers on the ends and running the vehicles counterclockwise.

The cars in the Exotic Driving Experience were run clockwise, though the Florida Highway Patrol said the track was designed to be run in the other direction. Had Terry’s car been traveling counterclockwise, it would not have been exposed to the guardrail’s end. The report shows that Terry died from blunt impact injuries to the torso with a lacerated aorta, due to the guardrail shooting 4 feet into the car and striking him.

Petty Holdings has the option to contest the fines, but they have not made any indication as to what they will do.

A $6,300 fine was applied for one serious violation, in which the workplace was deemed not “free from recognized hazards that were causing or likely to cause death or serious physical harm to workers.” The maximum penalty for a violation of this nature is $7,000. The company received a 10 percent reduction because they employed under 250 people.

The remaining $700 fine was due to a required form not being posted at the workplace.

The Walt Disney World Speedway closed in August 2015 to make room for an expansion of the Magic Kingdom parking lot.  The closure was planned before Terry’s death.

News source: Orlando Sentinel


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