(EMERALD ISLE, N.C.) -- At least 14 people were injured Saturday when a deck collapsed at a North Carolina beach house, officials said.
According to Emerald Isle Police, members of a family were on a deck overlooking the ocean preparing to take a family photo shortly before 7 p.m., when the structure collapsed.
First responders from Emerald Isle arrived on scene within minutes and began treating and triaging patients, police said.
"About a 12-by-12 section of deck collapsed, about ten to twelve feet. We transported fourteen patients from that collapse," Emerald Isle Fire Chief Bill Walker said, and added that there were about 20 people on the deck at the time.
Walker said that the deck itself gave way and collapsed inward, while the pilings holding up the deck remained upright.
Due to the number of casualties involved, neighboring agencies were called in to assist in transporting and dealing with the victims. Indian Beach, Atlantic Beach, Pine Knoll Shores and Western Carteret all sent Fire and EMS units to assist, while Broad and Gales Creek Fire Departments were also dispatched to provided assistance. Morehead City EMS provided a mass casualty bus to treat and transport victims.
Police reported that at least one victim was airlifted to New Hanover Regional Medical Center and at least two others are reported to be in critical condition.
Police said 14 people were transported to the hospital from the scene.
Of the people who were taken to Carteret General Hospital, three were in critical condition, hospital spokeswoman Tonya Fluellen said.
Another two people were airlifted from the scene to a different hospital, and were also believed to be in critical condition, the Carteret hospital spokeswoman said.
Injuries varied from people with several broken bones to those with minor scratches and cuts, according to Walker.
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