Following the recent move by its parent company NASCAR, the IMSA-sanctioned TUDOR United SportsCar Championship has adopted the policy of requiring its drivers to stay inside stricken cars unless personal safety is at risk.
The change was first made by NASCAR for its touring series in the wake of the accident involving Sprint Cup driver Tony Stewart that claimed the life of Kevin Ward Jr. at Canandaigua Motorsports Park in New York. Ward, who exited his sprint car after spinning and pursued Stewart on foot, was hit and killed by Stewart's car, leading the popular stock car series—and now its sports car property—to expand its rulebook to govern its drivers in the event of a crash.
IMSA's Rule 48.5.1 states:
DISABLED CARS. During an Event, if a Car is involved in an incident and/or is stopped on or near the Racing surface and unable to continue to make forward progress, unless extenuating emergency conditions exist with the Car (i.e. fire, smoke in cockpit, etc.), the Driver should take the following steps as a Full Course Yellow is declared:
• Communicate the condition of the Driver and Car to Officials where possible;
48.5.2. DRIVER EGRESS.