32 hospitalized after deck at Montana lodge collapses

AP PROVIDES ACCESS TO THIS PUBLICLY DISTRIBUTED HANDOUT PHOTO PROVIDED BY SOMERS/LAKESIDE FIRE DEPARTMENT; MANDATORY CREDIT. IMAGE TAKEN SATURDAY, JUNE 17, 2017

Thirty-two people were hospitalized after the second-story deck of a Montana lodge collapsed during a memorial event for a firefighter, authorities said Sunday.

(Firefighter/Engineer Mathew Borlandelli/AP)

Thirty-two people were hospitalized after the second-story deck of a Montana lodge collapsed during a memorial event for a firefighter, authorities said Sunday.

Six people were airlifted via helicopter Saturday shortly after the collapse of the deck in Glacier Presbyterian Camp, Lake County Sheriff Don Bell told NBC Montana.

Five people remained in critical condition late Sunday.

Those injured range in age from children to the elderly.

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About 50 people were gathered to remember William Nickel, a longtime Flathead Valley firefighter who died in April.

Bell praised the efforts made by the emergency crews.

“When I first got on scene I saw injured people,” he told NBC Montana. “I saw the ambulance crews and firefighters triaging people and stabilizing them, whether it was with ankle braces, wrapping someone’s knee or controlling bleeding on someone’s head. The emergency crews did a great job.”