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Americans among those gored in Spain's running of the bulls

09 July 2019

After being pulled from the arena by spectators, Alvarez was taken to hospital where he underwent a almost three hour.

The US citizens were among three people gored Sunday during the opening run in this year's San Fermin festival in Pamplona, where bulls tear through the streets as hundreds of people race to get out of the way.

"The impact was unlike anything I've ever felt".

On Sunday, San Francisco-based public defender Jaime Alvarez decided he would try to snap a selfie with a bull after he had successfully run ahead of the herd of 12,000-pound animals at the annual festival in Pamplona, Spain, NBC 15 reports.

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'I was really out of it, really stunned, I didn't know what direction to go.

Revellers run next to fighting bulls from Cebada Gago ranch, during the running of the bulls at the San Fermin Festival, in Pamplona, northern Spain, Monday, July 8, 2019.

Alvarez, 46, however, was caught off guard in the bullfighting plaza by the stray animal, who came charging at him and aggressively drove its horn into the California native's neck and cheek.

He was filming the chaos inside the stadium at the end of the run when he suddenly found himself face to face with one of the six bulls, which sunk its horn deep into his neck and fractured part of his cheekbone. Records dating back to 1910 record 16 deaths from the event.

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He said he was told it was "beyond miraculous" that his jugular vein or major arteries were not severed in the accident.

This festival attracts about 1 million spectators every year.

Alvarez says he ran most of the 913-yard (850-meter) course ahead of the bulls. He was reported in stable condition on Monday and could be released as early as Tuesday.

The local Red Cross said emergency personnel attended to 48 people with less serious or minor injuries, including two who were trampled by the racing bulls. Video footage showed how a bull approached Aaron Froelicher of Florence, Kentucky, from the back, tossed him into the air and gored him in the left thigh.

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Running of the bulls which lasted 2 minutes and 41 seconds, immediately after the official opening of the festival, when tens of thousands of guests celebrate the beginning of the festival the narrow streets during a bullfight.

Americans among those gored in Spain's running of the bulls