Accident in pit lane at Homestead

By - N. Schilke - Motorsport.com Homestead Speedway, Fl -- During the second caution on the track, most of the teams entered pit lane. During the stops, a serious accident involving the Robert Yates Racing team took place. Both Ricky Rudd...

By - N. Schilke - Motorsport.com

Homestead Speedway, Fl -- During the second caution on the track, most of the teams entered pit lane. During the stops, a serious accident involving the Robert Yates Racing team took place. Both Ricky Rudd and Ward Burton were in their pit boxes being serviced when Burton attempted to leave his box and reenter the race track. Pit lane was busy and as Burton was almost parellel to Rudd's car, he was directly in front of Casey Atwood. Atwood and Burton collided putting Burton's #22 Bill Davis Racing's Dodge in to side of the Taurus and the crew.

The most serious injury was to Bobby Burrell, Huntersville, NC who is Rudd's front tire changer. Burrell ended up against the pit wall and has suffered head injuries. He was immediately airlifted to Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami. His condition at this time is unknown.

The front tire carrier, Kevin Hall of Charlotte, NC, was also thrown to the ground toward the wall. He was treated for multiple bruises and release from the infield care center.

John Bryan, Charlotte, NC is the team's Jack Man. He was transported by ambulance from the infield care center to Baptist Hospital in Kendall for knee injuries.

Also injured was a NASCAR official, Kenny Lawson who flipped over the hood of Burton and back onto the ground. He was treated and released from the infield care center.

Crew Chief, Mike McSwain stated that the team is very emotional right now but they will finish the race as that is what the injured crew members would want and that their thoughts and prayers are with the injured crewmen. "Right now, we have help from Richard Childress Racing and about ten different team came down to help us out. That's what NASCAR is -- one big family," said McSwain.

END OF RACE UPDATE:

Burrell has been upgraded to "Serious Condition" and awake. Robert Yates has arrived at Jackson Hospital after a stop at Baptist Hospital.

Ward Burton, "It was hard to concentrate on the race, I kept asking Tommy how they were. On my way to the hospital."

Ricky Rudd did not want to talk to reporters as he was leaving immediately to visit his crewmen. Doug Yates, head engine builder and son of Robert, did talk briefly to the press. The team is upset and their main concern is the injured crewman. "Dad has arrived at the hospital to be with Burrell. His family is being flown down. The news has improved and he is getting good care," commented D. Yates.

UPDATE NOVEMBER 12:

Burrell has been upgraded to serious but stable condition, according to a hospital spokesperson. He is in the Neurosurgery Intensive Care unit at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami with head injuries.

Bryan was treated for a left knee injury [no broken bones] and a mild concussion. He was released last night from Baptist Hospital.

Drivers, NASCAR urge crew members to wear helmets.

UPDATE NOVEMBER 13:

The family of Burrell had good news earlier today when Burrell was awake and alert. Later this afternoon, Burrell was moved out of the Neuro Intensive Care Unit and into a private room. He is still listed in serious condition.

Further updates as they become available.

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