A swimmer died Saturday while competing in New York City’s first-ever Ironman triathlon.
Emergency workers tried to revive the 43-year-old man, who was not identified by name, after pulling him from the Hudson River, according to news reports. He was then transferred to a New Jersey hospital.
The exact cause of death was unknown pending an autopsy.
Ironman triathlons are grueling events in which competitors swim 2.4 miles, bike 112 miles and run 26.2 miles.
But even non-Ironman triathlons, such as an annual 32-mile race in New York City, occasionally experience fatalities.
Last year, for example, the New York City Triathlon left a 64-year-old man and a 40-year-old woman dead.
A 32-year-old man likewise died at the 2008 New York City Triathlon.
Nationwide, a recent study found 14 deaths among the 959,214 people who competed in U.S.A. Triathlon-sanctioned events from January 2006 to September 2008.
All but one of those deaths occurred during the swimming segment.
Triathlon participants have twice the risk of sudden death as marathon participants, according to the study.
Borough president casts doubt on race safety
After two people died at last year’s New York City Triathlon, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer called on the race’s organizers to review their safety protocols. He also questioned why the race went ahead despite choppy water, strong currents and high temperatures. “New Yorkers signed up for a triathlon – not a game of Russian roulette,” Stringer said at the time.