One child was killed and two others were injured after a rally car plunged into a group of attendees at an event in Western Australia on Saturday, Australia's AAP news reported. The car was participating in the WA Rally Championship event at Donnelly River, a series of yearlong racing events.
Saturday’s event was the Trade Hire Donnelly Rally, organized by the West Australian Car Club, Inc. The car crashed late on Saturday afternoon when it veered from its course and hit a group of people, local police said.
The incident took place between the towns of Nannup and Manjimup, approximately 173 miles south of Perth, the capital of Western Australia and largest city in the area.
The West Australia Country Health Service confirmed the two injured children were flown to Perth’s Princess Margaret Hospital for treatment of their injuries.
Police also arrived at the scene to investigate. Officers were joined by major crash squad officers. The Confederation of Australian Motor Sport is expected to release a statement regarding the crash on Sunday.
Western Australia Police said "a participating vehicle involved in a rally event ... left the road and collided with spectators ... early reports confirm at least two persons are seriously injured, with one child deceased,” according to a report from the Associated Press on Saturday.
The child who died was 6 years old, and the two injured children were aged eight and 10. No names of the children or their parents have so far been released.
This isn’t the first time a vehicle has veered into a crowd of spectators during a racing event. There have been others, the most deadly of which occurred in 1955 when a crash during the Le Mans 24-hour motor race in France caused large fragments of racing car debris to fly into the crowd. The crash resulted in the death of 83 people and the injury of 120 more. Driver Pierre Levegh also died in the event considered the most catastrophic accident in motorsport history.