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Monday’s changeable weather was challenging for Marathon planners

The Boston Athletic Association released statistics on the completion rate of runners in Monday’s Boston Marathon and medical data from the race.

A total of 97.4 percent of runners who were entered completed the race, close to the 98 percent average.

The number of medical encounters was 2,217, also around the average. Early in the race, runners tended to be treated for hypothermia, but as the day progressed, they were treated for heat stroke and exhaustion.

“We put the runners through more climate changes than a trip around the world,” said BAA CEO Tom Grilk. “It was probably the most difficult day to plan for in history, at least in our experience.”


The race started under cold and rainy conditions but concluded under warmer temperatures and sunshine.

“We were planning for so many different types of races,” said race director Dave McGillivray. “It was a moving target all week long and it kept changing and changing right up until we fired the gun for the start of the wheelchair race. We really didn’t know what we were dealing with.”

At the finish line, 1,050 runners were treated, and another 1,167 were treated along the course. Thirteen of the 106 runners admitted to area hospitals were expected to be released Tuesday or Wednesday.

With thunderstorms moving through the Boston area early Monday morning, the BAA also had 30 lightning shelters ready around the course and coordinated with MEMA in case the course needed to be evacuated.

“Everything is a function of when and where,” said McGillivray. “The local cities and towns most likely would make the call because they’re right there, in concert with the folks sitting in the bunker at MEMA.

“If evacuation was the call, then the race would then be diverted. Either get people off the course or into shelters or send runners off-course and then back on-course to avoid whatever might be going on right on the course.


“Lightning is tough to plan for because when, where, how far away is it, how fast is it moving?”

The BAA offered a deferral option to wheelchair, handcycle, and duo athletes and those running with prosthetics, but none took it.