Fierce Winds Bring Down the May Tree
This is the moment a falling tree almost flattens onlookers including children and causes spectators to flee for their lives as it falls while being chopped down as part of a bizarre festival ritual.
The incident took place during the Tallada de l’Arbre de Maig’ (The Cutting of the May Tree) in the village of Cornella del Terri in the eastern Spanish region of Catalonia.
In the video footage, two men are seen sawing the trunk of a tall tree positioned at one end of the square as crowds of onlookers line either side.
When the trunk is cut, one of the men appears to push it from behind so that it falls harmlessly in a straight line onto the middle of the square.
However, the enormous trunk leans to one side and begins to topple towards a large crowd, sending onlookers running in fear.
The two workers appear to take evasive action and push the toppling trunk away from the crowd.
The tree then crashes in the middle of the square, right between two fleeing onlookers who escape unscathed.
According to local media, no one was injured during the incident and the traditional event continued as normal.
Mayor Salvador Coll said that “security is the most important aspect of our celebration” and promised to introduce new safety measures next year.
He added: “The tree is in a trench that helps it fall in a straight line, but it seems that the wind did not help.”