More than a thousand runners in a two-day event were stranded by flooding in England’s Lake District. Police advised the organizers to cancel the race when weather forecasts predicted heavy rains. However, three thousand runners were ready to go, and the organizers let them start. They then tried to call off the two-day race but it was too late to get the runners back. They were stranded by rising streams. Many of them took shelter along the route at industrial sites:
Last night, as 1,000 sodden runners were being sheltered at a woollen mill in Cockermouth, race organisers refused to comment on the decision to go ahead.
Three hundred other runners found shelter in Honister slate mine after being driven off a mountain by the driving rain. Some were taken to hospital by ambulance suffering from hypothermia.
But last night hundreds of racegoers were left stranded in darkness on the fells as floodwater cut off roads leading to the base camp in Borrowdale.
The Original Mountain Marathon website said the race had been abandoned for the first time in its 40-year history.
‘All the rivers very quickly began to burst their banks and even minor becks became foaming torrents. Roads were awash,’ it said.
In the race, teams of two carry all equipment and food for 36 hours. They are not allowed to use GPS.