China has punished 27 government officials responsible for deaths from an ultramarathon last month, the state-run People Daily reported on Friday, one of the deadliest sports tragedies in recent history.
Twenty-one people died of hypothermia when extremely cold weather abruptly descended on a government-run 100km marathon on May 22 in the harsh northwestern province of Gansu.
The head of Jingtai County, where the competition took place, was relieved of his post, the People̵
Other responsible organizers include the mayor and head of the Communist Party of Bain, to which Jingtai’s jurisdiction belongs.
Other penalties imposed on officials include high low scores and disciplinary warnings.
Li Zuobi, the leader of the Jingtai County Party, fell from his apartment building on June 9 and died, state media reported, adding that police had ruled out the murder while Lee’s death was still under investigation.
It was unclear whether Lee’s death was linked to the ultramarathon.
Investigators said the tragedy was a public safety incident caused by extreme weather conditions, including strong winds, torrential rain and low temperatures, as well as unprofessional organization and operation.
The Chinese sports administration said last week that it was stopping all high-risk sporting events that did not have a supervisory body, established rules and clear safety standards.
Suspended activities include mountain and desert sports, wing flying and ultra-long-distance running.