At least three people are reported to have died and 22 injured after a 'drunk driver' ploughed her car into a crowd of spectators during the Oklahoma State University homecoming parade.
The incident occurred on Saturday (24 October) in Stillwater when 25-year-old Adacia Chambers' Hyundai Elantra struck a parked police motorcycle belonging to an officer who was providing security on the parade. Driving at speeds of 50mph, the car then careered into a crowd of spectators, who ran for cover. Eye witnesses described shocking scenes as victims were thrown '30 feet into the air like rag dolls'.
Eight of the injured were airlifted to hospitals with critical injuries. Seven others sustained less serious injuries. They were taken to Tulsa as well as to Oklahoma University Medical Centre in Oklahoma City.
Eye witness Dave Kapple from Houston told the Stillwater News Press that he and his son were 10ft away from the crash when it happened. He said: "We heard somebody scream, 'Look out!.' (He) ploughed through a police motorcycle, and then a crowd of people. People were flying everywhere."
— OU Sooners (@UofOklahoma) October 24, 2015
Konda Walker, from Anchorage, Alaska, who was also attending the event, told the News Press: "At first we thought it was part of the show. People were flying 30 feet into the air like rag dolls."
Stillwater police Captain Kyle Gibbs confirmed that the driver has been arrested charged with driving under the influence. "We treat these like we would any homicide investigation," Gibbs said. "It'll probably take several days to get additional information as to the cause of the accident"
The university posted on Twitter: "Oklahoma State University is saddened by the tragic parade incident earlier this morning. Our thoughts & prayers are with those affected."
Sky News reports that Oklahoma State University was to play Kansas in the homecoming football game on Saturday afternoon. Oklahoma State University President Burns Hargis said the game will go ahead.
Oklahoma State's homecoming parade is one of the most widely known in the US, with thousands of alumni returning to Stillwater every year to celebrate the institution's traditions.