Tuesday 15 October 2019

Two hurt at Food Fest as freak gust of wind fells giant steel arch

Emergency services attend to the injured
Emergency services attend to the injured

A young boy was rushed to hospital late yesterday afternoon after a massive steel arch fell on him at a popular food festival.

The arch - which welcomed visitors to the Wings Food Fest in Bray, Co Wicklow - was toppled by a freak gust of wind.

A man was also injured in the accident, which happened on the last day of the three-day family event.

Emergency services were called to the seafront festival shortly before 5pm.


Both the boy and the man were treated for minor injuries before being taken to different hospitals.

Gardai remained at the scene yesterday evening as the giant arch lay on the ground.

"It was a big enough sign - we're lucky that more people weren't injured. Luckily, gardai and paramedics were quick to arrive on the scene," said an eyewitness at the festival.

"The boy looked upset, and the man was treated on the ground for what appeared to be a shoulder injury."

Both the boy and the man were treated at the festival before being taken to different hospitals.

The boy was taken to Tallaght Hospital, while the man was taken to St Vincent's University Hospital, Dublin.

Virgin Media news reporter Paul Quinn, who took photos of the arch as he entered the festival, described the scene after it fell.

"When I went in, I took the initial picture. We were there for an hour or two, and you could tell the weather was changing," he said.

"The wind started to pick up and a few churros guys were getting worried because their stand was rocking back and forth.

"There were a couple of different Wings stands with tents that were about to blow away. People were holding on to them - the wind was that strong.


"Then when we were walking out, we noticed the sign had completely fallen forward and there was a man lying on the ground along with a child.

"There were visibly upset parents and kids were crying."

Mr Quinn said there was a local doctor "calming the [injured] man down".

"Then three fire brigades arrived and the paramedics arrived pretty quick," he added.

The free-to-enter Wings Food Fest, which opened last Friday, is a popular event featuring chicken wing-eating competitions, street food, craft markets and a live music.

It is hosted by Bray Chamber, Wicklow County Council and Bray.ie.

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