At least four people were killed when part of the stands of a bullring in Colombia collapsed.
“At the moment we have four dead – two women, a man and a child,” said the governor of the department of Tolima, José Ricardo Orozco, on local radio. The mayor of El Espinal, 150 kilometers southwest of the capital Bogotá, Juan Carlos Tamayo, confirmed the death toll. The child was only 14 months old.
According to the head of Tolima’s health authorities, Martha Palacios, 322 injured people were treated in hospitals. Four of them were initially in the intensive care unit.
According to Mayor Tamayo, the arena consisted of 44 sections, eight of which collapsed, “each with 100 people.” A video shows a bull running around after the accident. The city with around 78,000 inhabitants held a popular folk festival at the weekend, and several people were injured by bulls there on Saturday. The cause was initially unclear.
A bullfighting event called “Corraleja” took place in the arena for the Peter and Paul festival. Hundreds of people were in the audience. According to a report in the newspaper “El Tiempo”, a bull spread panic in the streets of the city after the incident.
President Ivan Duque announced investigations on Twitter. He also expressed his “solidarity” with the families of the victims.
Governor Orozco announced a temporary ban on events like the “Corralejas”. President-elect Gustavo Petro also asked mayors to stop authorizing events where “persons or animals” die.
Petro, who will take office in August, tweeted about a 1980 bullring accident in the city of Sincelejo that killed hundreds. During his time as mayor of Bogotá (2012 to 2015), Petro had stopped the bullfights in the famous La Santamaría arena.