According to government officials, at least four people were murdered and hundreds were injured, with approximately 30 of them critically injured, when a section of a stadium in El Espinal, Colombia’s western province of Tolima, fell during a bullfight on Sunday.
“We currently have four verified (death) fatalities – two ladies, an adult man, and a youngster – as well as around 30 critically injured persons. Of course, we’ve mobilized all of the hospitals and ambulances available to us “Tolima Governor Ricardo Orozco stated on a local radio station, BluRadio Colombia.
A video uploaded by Colombia’s President-elect Gustavo Petro shows a spectator stand collapsing as people flee the area.
Juan Carlos Tamayo, the mayor of Espinal, confirmed the tragedy in a Facebook post on Sunday, urging residents to flee the area.
“We deeply regret what occurred in our bullfighting arena,” Tamayo stated in a statement. “I would like to advise all inhabitants in the neighborhood to kindly leave; officials are already on the scene, and the injured have been sent to hospitals. Please leave, and let’s all work together to help the emergency services perform their jobs.”
Tolima Health Secretary Martha Palacios stated Sunday night that 322 people were hurt in the stadium collapse and were treated to local hospitals.
Colombia’s civil defense organization, Defensa Civil Colombiana, stated on Twitter that volunteers had evacuated injured victims to nearby medical institutions.
It published images of individuals on stretchers in corridors and patios.
Local councilor Iván Ferney Rojas shared a video of the fall on Twitter. Screams can be heard in the background as the three-level building collapses inward.
The footage appears to show the stand becoming packed with people as it smashes. Others on the ground flee as the building collapses on them.
There is no official reason of the collapse, but Tamayo stated in his statement that officials “have already began examining the causes of what transpired.”