At least two people were killed and 10 others were injured, including eight athletes competing at the 18th FINA World Championships, when a loft inside a nightclub collapsed in Gwangju, South Korea, on Saturday, Yonhap News Agency reported.
The collapse occurred at around 2:30 a.m. local time due to excessive weight, according to the Gwangju Fire and Safety Headquarters.
The injured athletes include three from the U.S., two from New Zealand, and one each from the Netherlands, Italy and Brazil. They are all water polo players except the Brazilian, authorities said, with six of them being women.
According to the organizing committee of the world championships, seven of the injured athletes were treated for minor injuries and returned to the athletes' village. One athlete was scheduled to get stitched up for a laceration later Saturday and then go back to the athletes' residence.
The USA Water Polo confirmed that players from its men's and women's teams were at the club celebrating the women's world title from Friday evening.
"This is an awful tragedy. Our hearts go out to the victims of the crash and their families," said USA Water Polo chief Christopher Ramsey in a statement. "We are grateful to all those who lent assistance. All USA Water Polo athletes are safe and accounted for."
The organizing committee added it has asked all participating national swimming federations to take care of their athletes' health and safety.
Dozens of other people suffered light bruises and scratches. At least two other foreigners were injured who were not athletes.
New Zealand's men's captain told Radio Sport, "We were just dancing and then the next minute we dropped five or six meters and everyone started rushing out of the club after that. We, I guess, fell on top of the heads of other people that were beneath us."