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Several people have been injured at the Running of the Bulls festival in Spain as the charging animals caught up to them.
This year’s San Fermin festival began in Pamplona yesterday (July 6) and the opening bull run saw six bulls set off on a half-mile course to the city’s bullring.
The event was the first of eight runs which take place over the annual nine-day festival. Bulls are run every morning before being killed in bullfights in the afternoon.
The festival draws around one million visitors annually but at least five people suffered gruesome injuries after yesterday’s run, which the final bull took two minutes 40 seconds to complete.
According to Reuters, a total of 53 people were treated by the Red Cross but three people were taken to hospital after being gored and a further two people went after suffering head trauma.
One man who was gored in the left leg is said to be a 23-year-old American, while the MailOnline reports the other gore victims were described as a 46-year-old Californian, who suffered a superficial neck wound, and a 40-year-old from the northern Spanish province of La Rioja who was also gored in the left leg.
One of the people who suffered head injuries was unconscious as they were taken away from the scene but a hospital spokesperson said they had come round in the ambulance.
TV footage of the event showed a man being lifted up in the air and dumped back on the ground after being surprised from behind by one of the huge animals, though it’s not immediately clear if this was one of the gore victims.
Since records began in 1910 sixteen people have been killed at the annual festival though it’s thought between 200 and 300 people are injured each year.
Animals rights campaigners stormed the arena of one of the first bull fights yesterday when one of the animals was speared to death.
According to PETA, Peter Janssen of the Vegan Strike Group commented:
The bull was terrified and in excruciating pain – I couldn’t leave him to die alone. We represent the majority of people around the world, who are calling for an end to this cruel event.
The San Fermin festival is set to run until July 15.
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