Race Course First Response


Forum Ride Along
Does any one out there work at a race track as first response? I want to get into it, I'm a race enthusiast and it sounds like that would be a great way to get involved. If you have or currently do work at a track, how often do you get calls where medical attention is required and is it tough getting the drivers out of the vehicles with all the extra safety equipment and roll bars? What equipment is most commonly used?


Legal Beagle
I don't, but I know several people who do work at local tracks. You generally need your EMT and several years of 911 trauma experience. It also helps to know someone at at the track. :) I believe paramedics also commonly stand-by, at least for major events.

As far as common equipment - backboard, traction splint. I think some of these guys do more femur fxs in a week than I've done, err, ever.


Forum Lieutenant
I was thinking more like horse racing...more fun in my opinion. I think more accidents too.


Forum Deputy Chief
Premium Member
I know around here, ambulance companies are contracted for the coverage-- from the race track's perspective, they dont need to hire, train, etc the personnel, and can write in the contract constant BLS or ALS coverage, even if a unit transports.
One of my old partners worked at a horse track for a long time (working for AMR), and loved it, but always talked about how much it sucked to clean the back of the truck of the mud.


Community Leader Emeritus
Back in the late 1970's I worked Daytona International Speedway. I would be very surprised if it's much different today. During major races they had a fully equipped trauma emergency room, filled with doctors and orthopods and Neurologists and the like, right in the infield.

When the company couldn't spare back-up units, we would jury rig our own private vans to transport to the "hospital"! The track was broken up, one "unit" to each of maybe 10 sections.

As paramedics we were instructed to scoop and go. Period. Under no circumstances was a helmet to be budged -- they were sawed off after extensive stabilization in the ER. Of course, the ABCs but not much more, and nothing more complicated than sweep, chin pulls, pressure over bleeding and very quick immobilization and Boogie!

Racers today are even better "armored" so their exoskeleton keeps everything pretty much pre-splinted for you.

But I'd make some serious inquiry. When I did it, I was disappointed in the work, the view of the race was pretty limited, but I loved the infield life!

Small tracks usually contract with local services for Stand-by ambulances. They don't want anyone to have to wait around. Some smaller Raceways WILL have volunteer EMTs stand by maybe for a free hot dog or two. You gotta ask around.
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My first EMT job ever was as race track first response. I worked at the Southern Oregon Speedway. I made a whopping $8.00 an hour as an EMT-B.
From my experience more bystanders get hurt than racers. Racing season can be hot outside and everyones drinking lot of booze. I had a lot of fights, diabetic calls, unconscious and syncope related to dehydration.

When things did happen on the track they where normally minor. I assited with only 1 extrcation and we used a sawzaw for that. It was a real fun job though I had a blast. But in the rare even something big did happen, it was always a TSE.