PITTSBURGH (CelebrityAccess) Police are investigating and reviewing video in an attempt to understand why a camel went berserk, injuring six children and one adult, at the Shrine Circus during its stop at PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh Sunday.
Injuries included bumps and cuts and one child sustained a broken arm during the 11 seconds of mayhem, Pittsburgh’s acting Emergency Medical Services Chief Ron Romano told the Tribune. A veterinarian who was there monitoring the area said the camel was uninjured, according to a Pittsburgh Public Safety spokesman.
Pittsburgh Public Safety Director Wendell Hissrich and circus Chairman Paul Leavy said they were looking into an unconfirmed report that a child threw a shovel at the camel’s feet before it started bucking, according to the Pittsburgh Tribune. The U.S. Agriculture Department’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service are also reportedly investigating.
The incident occurred during an intermission when the circus offered rides to spectators for $10. Leavy said he was on the floor at the time but wasn’t near the camel and declined to speculate to the paper what caused the incident. Other activities occurring at the time included face painting and other entertainment geared toward children.
“My concerns are with the children and the adult that were injured,” Leavy said. “This was our 69th year, and this is the first incident ever. We turned it over to the proper authorities for investigation, and we’ll follow that track.”
The city has an ordinance that bans devices like bullhooks, according to the paper, with animal rights supporters describing them as inhuman. However, circus insurance carriers require the use of the tools.
“They’re not used to beat the animals or anything as the activists would like you to believe,” Leavy told the paper. “They’re used to control them if needed. Everybody can see what’s going on. They’re right in their hands at the circus. It’s just a necessary tool.”