Spectator killed, 2 injured after car crashes through fencing at Georgia race track

HART COUNTY, Ga. — A crash into and through the retaining wall and fencing at a Georgia race track left a spectator dead and two others injured over the holiday weekend.

It happened during Saturday night’s Fourth of July weekend dirt track races at the Hartwell Speedway in front of a packed house.

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According to Hart County Sheriff Mike Cleveland, one of the cars in a late night race crashed into the retaining wall, then flew over the wall with parts flying through a chain link fence that was supposed to protect the fans.

Authorities say Paul Ballinger of Royston was killed after the debris hit him, another man and a 9-year old child were injured. They said Ballinger was at the track to watch the racing event.

Everyone at Hartwell Speedway ask that you please keep those involved in the tragic accident tonight at the Speedway in...

Posted by Hartwell Speedway on Saturday, July 3, 2021

Cleveland said the driver of the car that crashed wasn’t hurt.


There’s been no word of any problems with the retaining walls or safety netting at the track but investigators are still trying to figure out how debris from the car reached the fans in the stands.

The Associated Press contributed to this story

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