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Pamplona bulls injury toll rises

bull and runner
Close escape: A runner just avoids the bull's horns  

PAMPLONA, Spain -- Two people were gored and many others hurt on the third day of the annual San Fermin bull run as rainy weather made for hazardous running conditions for the second day.

A spokeswoman for the regional government of Navarre said: "It was another dangerous run, like on Saturday. There were bulls slipping all over the place and getting disorientated."

She identified the two men injured as James Shephard Skiff, a 19-year-old American, and Jonathan Massie, 24, from Canada.

The men were speared in the leg but neither was considered to be in a serious condition.

The nine-day festival starts each day with an 825-metre (half-mile) charge from corrals just outside the city to a city bull ring, where the bulls are killed by matadors later in the day.

Running of the bulls  

Hundreds of people dressed in the traditional white with red scarves take part in each of the daily "encierros," running alongside, in front of or behind the bulls and a few bullocks.

According to Reuters, Sunday's dash left four people injured, and the initial run on Saturday morning saw four people hurt.

An American woman received a deep horn wound to her thigh on Saturday and a man from Pamplona was gored in the chest. Both were said to be now out of danger.

One of the six bulls separated from the rest of the group on Sunday and charged at spectators, with its horns dipped and ready to attack.

Cattle herders eventually managed to guide it back along the route in Pamplona's historic town centre.

Television pictures showed a bull pinning a man to a wall. But its long, sharp horn passed only through his shirt.

The running of the bulls tradition dates back to 1591 when the purpose was to move the bulls into the arena. In the 17th century, a few daring spectators jumped in front of the bulls and ran for the first time.

The last run-related death came in 1995, when a 22-year-old American was killed by one of the bulls.

• History of bull running
• San Fermin festival specials

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