Semana Santa started differently this year with an effigy of the Virgen going up in flames in Vélez-Málaga. Two man received burns trying to put it out.
The incident occurred on Palm Sunday and involvled the Easter procession for the Pollinica and the Virgin of El Rocíowhen it reached La Carrera Street.
The emergency services received an alert around 18.00h and officers from the Policia Nacional & Policía Local, the fire service and an ambulance were despatched.
The two men who received burns had tried to beat the flames out with their hands, which is never a good idea. It was an officer from the municipal police, armed with a fire-extinguisher, who actually put the effigy out.
One injured man was taken by ambulance to Velez-Malaga Hospitalwhilst the other was treated on the spot by the crew of a Red Cross ambulance and did not require hospital treatment.
The Town Hall issued a message of support for the members of the processional brotherhood (Pollinica and Rocío Brotherhood) and expressed wishes for the two injured men to have a prompt recovery. They also said that the procession had been cancelled and asked for “maximum respect about what happened and to avoid publishing images.”
Editorial Comment: avoid publishing images of the incident? Yeah, right; like nobody has social media accounts! If a house goes up in flames, the Town Hall doesn’t ask for “maximum respect and to avoid publishing images” but this is religion and 100% idolatry so that’s different. It’s OK to set light to bulls’ horns and publish the images but don’t, ‘God forbid’ publish a decked out, religious effigy going up in flames!
Maybe they should stop processions from using lit candles once and for all so people don’t risk breaking their necks on wax-spattered pavements?
(News: Velez-Malaga, Axarquia, Costa del Sol, Andalucia)