Organisers of a monster truck show in Brisbane have come under fire after a child was hospitalised with minor leg injuries when a stunt car accidentally drove into the crowd.
Emergency services were called to the Mount Gravatt Showgrounds around 6.30pm on Saturday when the car crashed through a barricade into a mother and her children.
Witnesses described a car heading toward a ramp before rolling into the crowd without appearing to slow down.
Photos at the scene also showed the audience watching from behind thin temporary fencing just metres away from the stunt cars.
One child was taken to Queensland Children’s Hospital with minor leg injuries.
The incident has been condemned by fellow monster truck event promoter, Clive Featherby, who runs Monster Truck Promotions Australia, which was not involved in organising the Mount Gravatt event.
“This horrible accident at Mount Gravatt showgrounds last night … could have easily been avoided,” Mr Featherby said.
Queensland Ambulance senior operations supervisor Damian Gonzalez said their injuries could have been much worse, and raised questions about the event’s safety preparations.
“The potential is quite large for these trucks to go right into the crowd if they were to continue moving forward, so from our point of view it’s a very fortunate incident,” he said.
Mr Gonzalez said there were no first aid officers at the event, organised by a company called Ultimate Monster Shows.
“As far as we’re aware, when we arrived we weren’t met by any first aiders or official first aiders on scene,” Mr Gonzalez said.
“Generally, events that include large crowds and high-risk events we would always recommend some form of first aid be on scene.”
Beck Buckman, who witnessed the crash, said spectators came together to push the car off the injured girl.
“There weren’t any marshals or anything on the ground where it happened, so the crowd … quickly jumped into action to move the car so that the little girl was okay,” Ms Buckman said.
“No one knew what was going on, all these kids were screaming and upset, it was quite horrific – it’s honestly lucky her injuries weren’t worse than what they were.”
Ms Buckman said organisers did not keep the audience informed and had since ignored her requests for a refund.
“I’m pretty disgusted really – they deleted their event off Facebook last night … it’s like to them nothing’s ever happened.
“You can’t post on their page or anything like that yet they’re advertising for their next [event] at Caboolture next month which is really concerning.
“I know that I’m not the only person that’s upset about not getting our money back and my kids will never go to something like this again.”
Kellie Evans was at the event with her family and said she could not believe the type of fencing used and the proximity to the spectators.
“It sort of looked like what you would use at a school fete or at maybe a bicycle race through the city.”
She said despite the emergency, the rally continued.
“It was a little bit disturbing to think they still had motorbikes and stuff rolling around – they got the V8s that were on show to start driving around in circles.”
“There was nothing announced on the PA system … and yeah they just kept rolling the show.”
“I would have thought it should have been stopped immediately.”
Queensland Workplace Health and Safety is investigating the accident.
Ultimate Monster Shows has been contacted for comment.