Nine children, ages 13 to 15, died last night in Uganda while playing soccer from a lightning strike in the vicinity of the city. Arua city (Northwest), authorities and the Red Cross reported today.

One died instantly, while the others died shortly after being transferred unconscious to the regional referral hospital in Arua. According to a spokeswoman for police in northwestern Uganda, Josephine Angusia, the minors were playing a soccer match when they were caught in an electrical storm.

The local authorities indicated that three children who also participated in that match managed to survive and were transferred to the hospital in a health center, but they did not publish more data about their health yet.

Arua police told Efe by phone that the authorities were investigating "this tragic accident" and that they were still unable to share more information with the press.

These types of fatal accidents are common in Uganda, where thunderstorms are frequent and unpredictable often. In June 2011, a thunderbolt killed 18 children at a primary school in northwestern Uganda, near the Karuma Game Reserve.

Ugandan Deputy Minister of Disaster Prevention, Musa Ikero, expressed regret at the time that many schools and health centers did not have lightning rods. "This is negligence on the part of people who testify whether these buildings are suitable for public use, and we will work to prevent more accidents," Iquiro said.