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Fifth child dies after jumping castle tragedy at Tasmanian primary school
A fifth youngster has died as a result of a strange jumping castle accident at a Tasmanian primary school’s end-of-year party.
The youngsters were thrown around 10 metres after a severe gust of wind took up the jumping castle they were in, along with numerous inflatable ‘zorb’ balls, around 10 a.m.
Another youngster died in hospital as a result of the event, bringing the total number of deaths to five.
Four additional children are in critical condition, and one is in serious condition, according to authorities.
Among those deceased were two boys and two girls.
When the event occurred, grade five and six pupils at Hillcrest Primary School in Devonport, in the state’s northwest, were enjoying their last day of term.
Within minutes, police and emergency personnel were on the site, including two helicopters, and began delivering first aid.
The event is being investigated, according to Tasmania Police Commissioner Darren Hine, and the Coroner has visited the scene of the tragedy.
“We are all mourning their death on a day when these youngsters were supposed to be celebrating their last day of elementary school,” Mr Hine added.
“Our hearts grieve for the families and loved ones of these young individuals who were gone far too soon, as well as their classmates and instructors.”
“Our prayers are also with the emergency responders who came to attempt to save these people’s lives.”
In collaboration with WorkSafe Tasmania, a report will be produced for the Coroner.
The event, according to Premier Peter Gutwein, was “devastating and tragic for everybody involved.”
“Finding the correct words under such awful circumstances is tough for me,” he remarked.
“I am certain that I speak for all Tasmanians when I express my heartfelt condolences to the families, friends, and loved ones of everyone who has been impacted by today’s tragedy.”
“During this terrible time, our thoughts and prayers are with the five youngsters who remain in the hospital, as well as their families and friends.” It’s absolutely unfathomable that this horrible occurrence occurred on a day when school children were enjoying the end of the school year so close to Christmas.”
A candlelight vigil has been held at the Devonport Uniting Church, around 2.5 kilometres from the incident, with numerous neighbours attending to burn lights in honour of the children.
Flowers have also been placed outside the school gates as a memorial to the students.
The tragedy, according to Devonport City Council mayor Annette Rockliff, has shattered the town.
“It’s still hard to wrap your brain around having such a tragedy in our school community,” she added.
“I can’t imagine what those families are going through right now.”
“Of course, it’s every parent’s greatest fear.”
Two paramedics who aided at the incident were on their first day on the job.
The event, according to Prime Minister Scott Morrison, was “unthinkably tragic.”
“At this time of year, little children on a pleasant day out turn into such a dreadful tragedy,” he added.
“It simply breaks your heart,” says the narrator.
The police and rescue personnel are still on the site.