Two people have died and several have been injured after a circus tent collapsed during a severe storm in New Hampshire.
State police said around 250 people attended the Lancaster Fairgrounds to watch a show from the Walker Brothers Circus.
But 60mph storms and large hailstones caused the tent to collapse. A “young gentleman” and a “young girl” were killed, State Fire Marshal Bill Degnan said during a press conference, Reuters reported.
Between 15 and 22 people are believed to have been injured, many of whom were taken to hospital for treatment.
Officials worked through the night to investigate the collapse of the tent and authorities were looking into how it was put up.
“These are fairly substantial structures when they are put up and we haven’t had any issues in the past,” said Degnan.
Governor Maggie Hassan said the State Emergency Operations Centre had been activated and a Disaster Behavioral response Team had been sent to Lancaster to provide assistance.
The Governor is sending her thoughts and prayers to all those affected in Lancaster. State officials continue to provide support.— Gov. Maggie Hassan (@GovernorHassan) August 4, 2015
Local reporters shared pictures of the investigation taking place:
On scene Lancaster NH circus tent collapse. State confirms 2 fatalities, 15 hurt. 250 in tent for show at time. pic.twitter.com/Ej9OlFxyow— Jean Mackin (@JeanWMUR) August 4, 2015
Walker International Events, which operated the circus and had scheduled two shows at the fairground on Monday, were not immediately available for comment.
Thunderstorms had been forecast for the New Hampshire area on Monday night.
Additional reporting by AP and ReutersReuse content