The driver of the monster truck tragedy that occurred last weekend in Chihuahua, Mexico, killing nine people and injuring at least 80, was charged with manslaughter on Tuesday after state prosecutors claimed that 51-year-old Velazquez Samaniego did not meet age and health requirements to be driving the Big Show monster truck, the Associated Press reports. It is not immediately clear what those requirements are.

Samaniego claims that his helmet came off after the initial jump and he hit his head on a metal bar inside the cabin (presumably the roll cage), rendering him unconscious as he careened into the crowd of spectators at the end of the arena. The makeshift arena was built in a park, according to event organizers, and people had gathered without permission in the pit area. According to the report, however, veteran monster truck show organizers have stated that spectators should never have been allowed to be as close to an arena unprotected as they were at Chihuahua show.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 15 Comments
      Racerman967
      • 1 Year Ago
      Your helmet doesn't come off if you fasten the strap. And if you wear the safety belts/harness you don't fly around inside the vehicle.
        sp33dklz
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Racerman967
        Unless you're in Mexico and everything just breaks.
      Black Dyanmite
      • 1 Year Ago
      I don't blame the driver. It was an accident, and he wasn't drunk, so blaming him for getting knocked out in this event is scapegoating, nothing more. The only way he could have avoided this was to not get hurt in the jump, or not be there at all. The event organizers should be held responsible. They couldn't have set this up any worse. BD
      Cruising
      • 1 Year Ago
      I hope the Mexican authorities punish the organizers also for their neglect. Otherwise some other organizer will see this tragedy and be just as neglectful thinking they can get away from any responsibility for the welfare of the spectators. I'm not defending the driver but it looks like he will be a scapegoat as everyone looses sight of the larger picture of the other causes of the tragedy.
      getoffmylawn
      • 1 Year Ago
      thought these things had remote kill switches
        • 1 Year Ago
        @getoffmylawn
        [blocked]
      Robert Fahey
      • 1 Year Ago
      My wife is Mexican, so I\'ve spent some time down there. There aren\'t any rules. Open manholes, exposed wires, fireworks showering down over city streets, cars riding alongside ATVs, beer handed out on tour buses, medications and medical procedures issued by pretty much anyone, toddlers in diapers riding in pickup beds etc. You know, the way life should be.
        oneeightteenth
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Robert Fahey
        What Robert says is generally true. Most 2nd and 3rd world countries have clogged court systems and far fewer lawyers so there is less fear of liability. People do things at their own risk, including standing in unsafe places at monster truck rallies. Usually this makes life a lot more fun, but every once in a while tragedies like this happen with many people sharing the blame.
        GRR
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Robert Fahey
        Hahaha come on, I have been to mexico several times, to diferent parts of the country, and that statement is as absured and ignorant as thinking mexico is all deserts, canctuses, man with sombreros and dunkies. At least thats not the mexico i've come to know, but i dont doubt there are some places where you do see some crazy ****, but then again like in most countries..
      protovici
      • 1 Year Ago
      Aren't Mexicans supposed to be only in low riders? This machine is way to big for even the tallest of Mexicans. Who would attend an even like this with no safety features or perform stunts without proper safety? Stupid.
      Duck
      • 1 Year Ago
      Helmet thing sounds like an excuse. I imagine he was more like "mang, so sleepy, jumping cars is hard work, time for siesta". Kidding aside, I'm really surprised this happened, as Mexico is not known for cutting corners when it comes to even basic common sense safety concerns.
      Bassracerx
      • 1 Year Ago
      i hope that justice is actually served. whatever that means. my gut tells me that regardless of what actually went down this guy is going to burn at the stake because it affected so many people and families that mob mentality will just turn the driver into a demon.
      BT
      • 1 Year Ago
      I dont see how different this event is vs. the Baja 1000. Very little barriers to protect the fans. Should blame the organizers.
      sp33dklz
      • 1 Year Ago
      Yea, and the whole track in general is safe.
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