Runner’s Death At SF Half Being Investigated

  • By Duncan Larkin
  • Published Feb. 8, 2011

It took paramedics 20 minutes to arrive at the race’s finish line.

According to the deputy director of the San Francisco emergency services agency, race officials at the San Francisco Half Marathon last weekend were ill prepared to deal with medical emergencies.

This opinion from the agency was issued following the death of runner Peter Haas who collapsed near the race’s finish line. Witnesses said that it took paramedics 20 minutes to arrive at the scene. While they were on their way, the race announcer had to repeatedly call for help before any staffers arrived.

Dave Rhody, president of RhodyCo Productions, the company that puts on the race, disagrees with the findings and disputes the eyewitness testimony.

“We use every means possible to get [announcers'] attention. That’s what the crowd hears,” Rhody said. “And unfortunately, they hear it and interpret it in a different way,” he said.

Rhody went on to state that it is “entirely not true” that medical personnel were not on hand to assist the collapsed runner.

The city will now conduct a formal investigation of the incident.

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Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin is the news editor at and a freelance journalist who’s been covering the sport of running for over five years. He’s run 2:32 in the marathon and won the Himalayan 100-Mile Stage Race in 2007. His first running book, RUN SIMPLE, was released last July.

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