Five children were killed and four others were in serious condition after falling from an inflatable “jumping castle” that rose 10 meters into the air in gusting winds at a school in the Australian state of Tasmania Thursday. The school was holding a party on the occasion of the end of the school year.
“Many children fell from the jumping castle. It appears they fell from a height of about 10 metres,” Tasmanian Police Chief Debbie Williams told reporters.
Tasmanian Premier Peter Gutwin described the incident as “unimaginable” and said: “I know this is a strong and compassionate community, and they will stand by and support each other.”
Darren Heine, the Tasmanian police commissioner, said the children who died included two boys and two girls in sixth grade, aged 10 or 11. Police later confirmed the death of another child in hospital.
Five children were taken to hospital, four of whom are in critical condition. Hein added that an investigation into the incident was underway.
Footage broadcast by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation showed police comforting each other while paramedics provided first aid to the victims.
Parents arrived at the school gate to pick up their children while helicopters took the injured to hospitals.