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Five Seriously Injured In First Day Of Running With Bulls Festival

Three people have been gored and a further two people have suffered head trauma during the first day of Spain's best-known bull-running festival in the northern town of Pamplona, the Red Cross says.

One man was loaded into an ambulance on a stretcher shortly after the dash through the medieval town centre's narrow streets to the bullring, which lasted two minutes and 41 seconds.

Thousands of runners, dressed head to toe in white, with bright-red neckerchiefs, gather every year for the traditional morning run, after which the animals are kept in the bullring until the afternoon's fights.

Running With The Bulls
Five people have been injured during the first day of the festival. Photo: Getty Images.

A total of 53 people were treated by the Red Cross. Runners often get injured at traditional bull-runs in Spain, but no one has died at Pamplona's San Fermin festival since Spaniard Daniel Jimeno was gored in the neck by a Jandilla bull in 2009.

READ MORE: Woman Killed By Bull At Festival Race

This year, the bulls were from cattle breeder Puerto de San Lorenzo, whose bulls have been responsible for one goring in the past. One person was gored on the opening day of the festival last year.

Running With The Bulls
Two people suffered serious head trauma. Photo: Getty Images.

Locals and tourists alike will join in the 8 am run every morning until next Sunday.

The festival regularly stokes debate about the treatment of animals. On Friday, protesters lay half-naked on the street with fake spears coming out of their backs to protest against what they see as cruelty.

Running With The Bulls
A protest was held before the festival started. Photo: Getty Images.