Collapse of Colombian bullfighting stand kills at least 6 people

BOGOTA, Colombia. At least six people died and more than a hundred were injured Sunday when wooden stands for spectators at a bullfighting festival collapsed, forcing people to flee for safety.

The collapse occurred in El Espinal, a city of 75,000 people located about 95 miles southwest of the capital, Bogotá. a Corraleja, a festival in which the public is invited to fight bulls, even ride them or taunt them. It is more informal than the traditional Spanish bullfight and the bull is not killed at the end.

Among those killed on Sunday was a one-year-old child, according to local mediawhich also reported that the bull had escaped and was running freely through the streets.

One city council member sought help from nearby hospitals and ambulance services.

elected President Of Colombia, Gustavo Petro, expressed his condolences on Sunday afternoon and noted that his country has already faced similar disasters. In 1980, the spectator stands collapsed in the northern city of Sinselejo, killing hundreds of people. Overcrowding and poor construction were later blamed.

“This has happened before, in Sinselejo. Petro said on Twitter. “I ask the mayor’s office not to authorize more spectacles with the death of people or animals.”

The practice has faced many legal challenges over the years and has been periodically banned in some parts of the country due to concerns about animal cruelty and danger to spectators.

In 1989 racks fell apart in a hondaa city near Bogotá, eight people died and 200 were injured. In 2006 similar incident dozens of wounded in a town near El Espinal. And in 2013 the bull attacked the audience in the northern city of Archona, killing two men.

mr. Petro banned this practice in Bogotá when he served as mayor in 2012, but the matter has since been left in legal limbo by the country’s Constitutional Court.

Outgoing Colombian President Ivan Duque pledged support.

“We will ask for an investigation into the facts, a speedy recovery of the wounded and solidarity with the families of the victims,” he said.