A camel ride through Valencia’s Turia Natural River park ended in tragedy on April 4 with the death of a 20-year-old man.
Christian BD suffered irreversible brain damage and his 22-year-old sister was seriously injured after the animal freaked out when it saw a horse.
The 45 minute excursions in the Maninses area are a popular attraction taking a route through the forest, accompanied by a tour guide.
Advertising material for the trips organised by the Manicaball company state that ‘camels are very docile animals and there is no problem when riding them’.
The brother and sister were on a double-saddle when the camel reacted in surprise to a woman on horseback.
The siblings fell off but their legs were caught in the saddle as the camel went amok.
It careered for 200 metres dragging them behind.
The drama unfolded in front of the children’s parents who were seated on a camel behind them.
The loose animal was eventually stopped by a car that blocked its path.
Christian suffered permanent brain damage after falling to the ground with neither he nor his sister wearing helmets.
They are not supplied by the excursion operator for camel rides but are mandatory for anybody on a horse.
His sister suffered multiple injuries including two broken legs.
Christian was kept alive for three days on a ventilator in order that his organs could be harvested at Valencia’s Santa Fe Hospital.
He was a student at a college in Godella and his funeral was held last Saturday(April 10).
A friend told the Las Provincias newspaper:“We know that it was an accident but companies that organise activities with animals should control them further to guarantee people’s safety.”
Manicaball said that it was fully cooperating with the police and it had all the necessary permits and insurance in place to carry out its activities.