Three years ago, the Society strategically identified four industry focus areas: Aerospace and Defense, Transportation (Motorsports), Oil and Gas, and Medical Device Manufacturing. SME's ultimate goal was to serve as a technical resource to these industries through their members. In 2007, two tragic accidents occurred at NHRA racing events -- Eric Medlen died in a crash in March, and 14-time NHRA champion John Force was nearly killed in October. After these two accidents, SME was asked to connect its technology experts to the racing experts. This collaboration ultimately led to industry design changes by top chassis builder and SME member Murf McKinney of McKinney Corp. On Jun 21, 2008, Scott Kalitta, 46, died after a crash during qualifying at the NHRA SuperNationals. Drivers are hoping that Kalitta's death will lead to even safer dragsters.
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