Five badly injured in Pamplona bull run

A photograph taken from San Fermin festival in Pamplona on July 8, 2015
A photograph taken from San Fermin festival in Pamplona on July 8, 2015

Five people have been hospitalised following the opening run of Spain’s annual bull running festival in Pamplona

Officials have announced that one Spaniard, aged 43, and two Americans, aged 23 and 46, were injured during the San Fermin festival in Northern Spain. The 46-year-old American required surgery after being gored in the neck towards the end of the 850-metre course. The other two men were both gored in the thigh. In addition, a further two young Spanish men sustained head injuries.

The event runs for nine days, and each day six bulls are released to run down the narrow streets of Pamplona, before being killed in the afternoon bullfights. The opening run this year lasted for just under three minutes and emergency responders from the Red Cross revealed that a total of 48 people were treated at the scene by the charity.

To date, the annual bull running has claimed at least 16 human lives since records first began in 1910, the most recent of which occurred in 2009, when Daniel Jimeno Romero died. The number of bulls that have lost their lives remains to be recorded.

It is estimated that roughly one million people line the streets in celebration of San Fermin each year. Most who are willing to partake are well aware of the risks, but ITIJ urges insurers to encourage travellers against engaging in such an unnecessarily cruel and dangerous sport and hopes that those who do are aware of where their coverage ends.