Sprint-car driver killed in Pennsylvania racing accident

Sat Aug 15, 2015 9:26am EDT
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(Reuters) - A sprint-car driver was killed in a racing accident during warm-up laps for a weekend event, prompting a Pennsylvania speedway to cancel racing activities on Saturday.

James "Jim" Campbell Jr. died when his car crashed on Friday night on the third corner of the clay track at Williams Grove Speedway in central Pennsylvania, about 115 miles west of Philadelphia, the facility said on its website.

The organization had been scheduled to host a "Kids Night" promotion and a Saturday racing series, which were canceled.

Witnesses described a multi-vehicle crash that began when one car hit a wall and caught fire, according to WHTM-TV in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

The death follows a year of heightened scrutiny on the dangers involved in motorsports racing after NASCAR star Tony Stewart struck and killed a fellow driver in sprint-car race in New York last August.

Stewart was not charged in the incident, which was not part of the NASCAR series, but the fatal incident prompted NASCAR to introduce new safety rules.

(Reporting by Letitia Stein in Tampa, Fla., editing by David Evans)