Three people injured during Running of the Bulls in Spain

Three people were hospitalized, including one gored, Sunday after the first day of the famed Running of the Bulls festival in Pamplona, northern Spain.

Runners try to avoid bulls as they run down a street during the traditional San Fermin bull run in Pamplona, Spain, on Sunday.

During the nine-day San Fermin event, which draws around one million visitors, participants each morning run along a half-mile course through the narrow streets of Pamplona to the bullring where the the animals are killed in afternoon bullfights.

In the first event, which lasted two minutes, 40 seconds, the three injured were one runner gored in the left leg, another knocked unconscious with head injuries and a third dumped on his backside after being surprised from behind by a bull, Metro reported.

One of the six fighting bulls fell early on, the Sun reported.

The person knocked in the head was taken away from the scene unconscious, but the hospital spokesman said the 25-year-old had come around in the ambulance.

The festivities kicked off Saturday at midday with the traditional “chupinazo” during which revelers wear traditional red and white are soaked in sangria.

Jesus Garisoain, a member of the city’s official brass band, launched the rocket to mark 100 years since the group’s foundation. From the city hall’s balcony, he declared “Long live San Fermin” — the saint honored by the festival.

Animal rights groups have protested the activities.

On the eve of the festival, dozens of semi-naked activists simulated speared bulls lying dead on Pamplona’s cobbled streets.

ByAllen Cone