China to Arrest Operators of Marathon Tragedy That Cost 21 Lives

China said it will arrest five people after a dereliction of duties led to the death of 21 people in a marathon in the northwestern province of Gansu last month.

Gansu Shengjing Sports Co., the operator of the marathon, failed to implement proper standards and requirements for the extreme sport, according to an investigation report published by Gansu government on Friday. The authority approved the arrests of five people from the firm on criminal charges.

Authorities slapped warnings and penalties on 27 government officials including the mayor of the host city of the event. The local government failed to perform their duties, and problems involving bureaucracy were prominent, according to the report.

Hail, freezing rain and gale-force winds hit the high-altitude race, leading to China’s worst sports tragedy. Some of China’s top race runners were reported to be among the victims in the 100-kilometer (62-mile) event.

China’s sports authorities suspended some “highly dangerous” sports events earlier this month including mountain and desert races after the incident. The Gansu government has pledged to beef up safety measures including making emergency plans, according to the report.

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