TIME Accidents

Circus Accident Caused by Snapped Clamp, Official Says

Authorities say a snapped clamp caused eight hanging acrobats to plunge during a "Legends" show of the Ringling Bros. & Barnum and Bailey Circus on Sunday, leaving three in critical condition. The accident was witnessed by an audience of thousands, many of them children

Authorities have determined a snapped clamp caused eight arial hair-hanging performers to plummet to the ground Sunday in a Rhode Island circus accident.

“We have identified a clamp that snapped that held them to the rafters, and it failed,” Providence Public Safety Commissioner Steven Pare told WPRO-AM. Three of the acrobats are still in critical condition, but none of the injuries appear to be life-threatening, the Associated Press reports.

“Unfortunately this particular clamp failed,” Pare said. “It snapped off. We have it, we’re analyzing it, we’re seeing why it happened to ensure it doesn’t happen in the future. That’s all part of our focus.” The performers fell 25 to 40 feet onto another dancer on the ground.

The act was part of the “Legends” show of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey Circus, during which the performers hang “like a human chandelier” using their hair. The accident was witnessed by an audience of about 3,900 people, which included many children.

[AP]

Your browser, Internet Explorer 8 or below, is out of date. It has known security flaws and may not display all features of this and other websites.

Learn how to update your browser
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 46,500 other followers