Dr. Keith Williamson is the Medical Director for Hotter 'N Hell . He says weather is the ultimate factor when it comes to health related cases.
"If it's hot we'll see a lot of metabolic stuff, if it's cool and comfortable we'll see a lot of trauma. Usually it starts out trauma in the morning and heat disease and hypo-hydration later," Dr. Williamson said.
Dr. Williamson says if temperatures don't become 'Hotter 'N Hell' on Saturday there could still be an overflow of patients in the United Regional Emergency Room. He says that's what happened last year. Due to the cool weather riders got over-confident and hit the ground pedaling fast and hard. That led to a series of crashes and broken bones, so many, that in one case, they had to send a patient to Fort Worth on a helicopter.
"We'll have about, I think 12- to-14,000 riders this year and each year about five to six% become patients so that's our numbers," said Dr. Williamson.
There will be 800 medical community volunteers along the bike path at different medical stations. Each is fully capable of fixing a scraped elbow or knee, but, if a rider suffers from trauma, heat disease, dehydration or over hydration the patient will be transported to United Regional.
"They've got excellent emergency room physicians and nurses who are every much a part of the Hotter N' Hell team as the people out in the tents, said Dr. Williamson, "as long as I've known the Hotter 'N Hell, every year we've put three or four people in the hospital."