Belfast Telegraph

Friday 29 August 2014

Woman gored during final bull run

Revellers are trampled by a Torrestrella ranch bull at the bull ring at the San Fermin fiestas, in Pamplona (AP)
Revellers wait for the running of the bulls during the San Fermin fiestas (AP)

A bull gored an Australian woman and left her seriously injured during the final bull run of this year's annual San Fermin festival in Spain. Four other runners were treated in hospital for cuts and bruises.

The 23-year-old woman, identified only as JE, was gored in the back and suffered multiple rib fractures and damage to her right lung that left her in "very grave" condition after an operation at Navarra Hospital, said the regional government that organises the festival.

The Australian was struck by a massive Miura bull as she clung to wooden barriers outside the bullring entrance in Pamplona, said regional health authority spokesman Javier Sesma.

It is very rare for women to be gored during the annual festival since most of the runners are men. Javier Solano, a San Fermin expert working for national broadcaster TVE, said records showed only two other women had been injured by gorings in the recent history of the fiesta.

The four injured runners who were tossed by bulls or fell as they ran were identified as a 39-year-old man from California, a 23-year-old man from Madrid and two men from Navarra. None of those injuries were serious.

Dramatic confrontations between runners and bulls had occurred during the previous two days of the festival.

A 19-year-old Spaniard who had stopped breathing after being crushed by large pileup of fallen runners on Saturday has recovered consciousness and begun to breathe without mechanical assistance, Mr Sesma said.

A 35-year-old American man from Cleveland, Ohio, who was gored by a bull on Saturday was recovering "favourably" from a "rectal perforation" that affected his abdomen and a kidney, said a Navarra Hospital statement.

Patrick Eccles, a 20-year-old University of Utah student who was gored on Friday, was in a stable condition and improving after having had his spleen removed, the statement said.

Miura bulls, which can weigh 695 kilograms (1,530 pounds), are renowned as Spain's largest and fastest fighting bulls, and today's bull run was quick, taking 2 minutes, 16 seconds to cover 928 yards (850 meters) from stables just outside Pamplona's medieval stone wall to the central bullring.

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