Jockey Leonel Camacho Flores was waiting to enter the starting gate for Turf Paradise's final race on March 26 when the filly he was riding suddenly flipped over on top of him. According to azcentral.com, the rider suffered multiple fractures to his pelvis in the accident and underwent surgery; he may not be able to ride for as long as a year.
Paramedics attended Flores quickly, but then stood waiting for an ambulance to arrive. One of those paramedics was supposed to call the local dispatcher, but failed to follow protocol and has since been fired. Once the dispatcher was contacted, the closest ambulance was not on call and one had to be sent from a more distant location. Overall, estimates place the ambulance arrival time at over 30 minutes after Flores' fall.
Administrative Code in Arizona stipulates that racing licensees “shall provide” an ambulance for morning training and races, but only an unmarked SUV was available that afternoon at Turf Paradise. General manager Vince Francia said that the track has relied on Phoenix Fire Department for medical transport “for years,” but that it does hire paramedics to be on hand.
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