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Swim Conduct: Emergencies

By USA Triathlon | Feb. 03, 2014, 5:12 p.m. (ET)

The rule we’ll discuss this week is Article 4.3 — Emergencies.

This rule states that if a participant needs to call for assistance during the swim, the athlete should do so by pumping his or her arm up and down, and/or calling out for help. If assistance is rendered, the swimmer must retire from the course unless no forward progress was made while receiving assistance.

Race officials who provide assistance may order the participant to get in the boat, if the officials feel that is in the best interest of the participant and the rest of the field. In that case, the participant will be disqualified. Here's the rule:

4.3. Emergencies.
A swimmer experiencing difficulty and in need of assistance shall raise an arm overhead, and pump it up and down, and call or seek assistance. A swimmer, who has received official assistance, whether voluntary or involuntary, must retire and withdraw from the remainder of the race unless such assistance did not aid the swimmer in making forward progress. No swimmer shall return to the race if the official rendering assistance requests that the participant withdraw from the race or receive medical assistance.

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