July 7, 2006

American paralysed at Pamplona bull festival

MADRID (Reuters) - A New York man was paralysed below the
waist while dodging young bulls among a crowd of revellers at
Spain's San Fermin Festival in Pamplona on Friday, festival
organisers said.

The 31-year-old was taken to intensive care after he was
hurt while trying to escape from a bull when the animals were
released in Pamplona's bullring following the famous running of
the bulls through the town's streets.

Another six people were injured dodging six half-tonne
bulls from the Marques de Domecq ranch, including another New
Yorker, a Briton and a New Zealander who was gored in the thigh
on the first day of the week-long San Fermin festival.

While the festival made famous internationally by Ernest
Hemingway's novel "The Sun Also Rises" has ancient roots, many
of the runners are now foreign tourists and the danger is
increased by a tradition of drinking all night before the run.

A total of 15 people have been killed during the festival
since 1924. The bulls are despatched by matadors in the
afternoons following the runs.