Two injured in Pamplona bull run


Click to follow
The Independent Online

Several thousand people tested their bravery by dashing with six fighting bulls through the streets of the northern Spanish city of Pamplona in the fifth day of the famed San Fermin festival. Two people were treated for minor injuries, but no one was gored.

The bulls, accompanied by guiding steer, stayed together for much of the chase but one broke free toward the end, causing fear among screaming runners. An isolated bull is more dangerous because it can become disoriented and more likely to charge.

Red Cross spokesman Alfonso Contin said there were no gorings, while the city's Navarra Hospital said a 56-year-old American from New York was treated for a hand injury and a 32-year-old Spaniard suffered a broken nose.

The two were identified only by their initials. The hospital had initially said three people were injured.

The nine-day festival, made famous by Ernest Hemingway's "The Sun Also Rises," finishes Saturday. It attracts tens of thousands of foreigners, mostly from the United States, Britain, and Australia.

In the four runs prior to Wednesday, four people — including two Britons and an American — were slightly injured in minor gorings.

In the runs, the bulls are released from a pen and herded at great speed along a narrow, winding 849-meter (928-yard) course to the city bullring. The near three-minute event is held each morning at 8 a.m. and is preceded by all-night partying in the city.

The bulls used in the centuries-old fiesta can weigh more some 600-kilogram (1320-pound) and have killed 15 people since record keeping began in 1924. The last person to die was a young Spaniard in 2009. The bulls are usually killed by matadors in evening bullfights.

Oxford's vice chancellor, Professor Andrew Hamilton said it is still too early to know the consequences of the fee hike, but he added: "We are very concerned that over time there will be an effect, a concern about the size of loans that will be accrued to attend Oxford, or indeed other universities."

Jo Dibb, headteacher of Elizabeth Garrett Anderson School in north London, said it was encouraging that figures show that more students from disadvantaged backgrounds are applying to university.

But she added: "That's not what we're hearing on the ground."

For some students, "the notion of debt may be stopping them from applying," Ms Dibb suggested.

Other youngsters may apply and gain a university place but then feel they cannot afford to take it up, or start a degree course and have to give it up because of unforeseen family circumstances, she said.

The all-girl Elizabeth Garrett Anderson School (EGA), was visited by US First Lady Michelle Obama in April 2009.

Last year, she invited some of the school's pupils to join her on a trip to Oxford University, where she encouraged the girls to get a good education and consider going to university.