NASCAR spokesman Kerry Tharp confirmed that the accident would be reviewed to see if there needed to be changes made to Auto Club Speedway in light of what happened. Track president Gillian Zucker said that there had not been any previous recommendations from NASCAR to implement SAFER barrier technology along the part of the inside wall where Hamlin hit on Sunday.
"When [SAFER] barriers first came we certainly didn't put them all around the facility, then NASCAR made recommendations and we added more here and more here," she told ESPN.com
The cost of SAFER barrier technology is said to be $500 per square foot, with Fontana spending an estimated $6 million to introduce the system to the entirety of the outside wall. The system also has a relatively short lifespan compared with concrete walls, and needs regular upgrades and replacements to maintain its effectiveness all of which adds to the ongoing operating expense.
However, its effectiveness in preventing serious injuries has been proven on an almost weekly basis in US oval racing, and exceptional cases such as Hamlin's only underline the consequences of not having SAFER barriers everywhere they're needed.
"Anytime that NASCAR makes any recommendation that they feel will reduce injuries or the threat to injuries, we will always implement that," confirmed Zucker.
"I'm sure when we go back there will be one there," said Hamlin on Monday evening. "It's just unfortunate it takes wrecks like here and what we saw at Watkins Glen for them to kind of reconfigure these tracks where they need to be safety-wise."