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NEWS RELEASE · 12th February 2010
Office of the Premier
Premier Gordon Campbell issued the following statement today on the death of Georgian athlete Nodar Kumaritashvili today in Whistler:

"On behalf of all British Columbians, I want to extend our deepest condolences to the people of Georgia and to the family and teammates of Nodar Kumaritashvili in the wake of this terrible accident.

"The loss of a gifted, talented young athlete training for the opening of the 2010 Olympic Winter Games is heartbreaking for people around the globe.

"We all want to see athletes compete hard and succeed in their chosen sports, but at the same time our paramount concern is always for their safety and health.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with Nodar's loved ones during this tragic time."


A men’s Olympic luger from the country of Georgia died Friday after a high-speed crash on a track that is the world’s fastest and has raised safety concerns among competitors. IOC president Jacques Rogge said the death hours before the opening ceremony “clearly casts a shadow over these games.”

Nodar Kumaritashvili lost control of his sled during training, went over the track wall and struck an unpadded steel pole near the finish line at Whistler Sliding Center. Doctors were unable to revive the 21-year-old luger, who died at a hospital, the International Olympic Committee said.

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