Daily US Times: After extreme weather struck a race last month and caused the death of 21 runners, China has suspended all ultramarathon and long-distance races.
Freezing rain and high winds hit participants in a 100km (60-mile) ultramarathon in Gansu province.
The ultramarathon was halted when some of the 172 runners went missing, and a rescue operation was launched.
Now China is suspending all high-risk sports events that lack clear oversight, safety standards and rules.
The suspended sports include desert trekking, wingsuit flying, trail running and ultra-long distance races, according to a statement by China’s General Administration of Sport.
It is not clear how long the suspension will last.
According to the Chinese Athletic Association, 25 ultramarathons and 481 trail races were held in 2019.
Last month’s ill-fated race took place in Yellow River Stone Forest, a tourist site in Gansu province.
Runners set off at 09:00 local time, with some wearing just shorts and T-shirts.
Surviving participants said the forecast had predicted some rain and wind, but nothing as extreme as what they experienced.
About three hours after the start, a mountainous section of the race was hit by heavy rain and gales, hail, causing temperatures to plummet, according to officials from the nearby Baiyin city.
Many runners reportedly lost their way as the weather affected visibility.
More than 1,200 rescuers were deployed after missing athletes were reported, assisted by thermal-imaging drones and radar detectors, according to Chinese state media.
You may read: Severe weather kills 21 ultramarathon runners