The Rio Games had big shoes to fill following the 2012 games, held in London, which were widely praised for being one of the safest big builds in History. The 2012 games had an accident frequency rate of 0.15, compared with the industry standard of 3.4. And this is with a workforce of over 12,000 people working 80 million man hours.
However, the Rio games were been plagued with issues since they started. Between January 2013 and March 2016, 11 workers lost their lives working on the Olympic village. The reasons of death varied from electrocution to falling from scaffolding.
There were concerns over the health of some of the athletes competing in water based events. Both the sailing and swimming events took place in bays where there has been reports of raw sewage and waste contaminating the waters. In the athletes village some of the teams complained that the standards are not good enough, with the head of the Australian team saying that the village was ‘simply not safe or ready’ after his team found issues with the gas, electricity and plumbing.
For those who travelled to attend the games as spectators the ever present threat of the Zika virus was looming over them. The Zika virus is usually mild, but can be quite serious: if a pregnant woman contracts it, it can create birth defects in the child. It is transmitted mainly by mosquitos local to the area, but can also be transmitted via sexual intercourse.
It is a shame that the possible concerns over the health and safety of the competitors, their support staff and of the attendees almost over shadowed what should have been a monumental occasion. An occasion which created 90,000 jobs for locals, and had a further 85,000 outsourced staff brought in.
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