WASHINGTON - Nine acrobats were seriously injured Sunday when a platform collapsed during an aerial hair-hanging act during a circus performance filmed by spectators in Rhode Island. Eight of the female acrobats, performing during a Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus show in Providence, Rhode Island, were meant to hang by their hair in chandelier-like fashion. The circus’s parent company Feld Entertainment said the crash was under investigation.

“There was an accident during the hair hang act. All performers in the act received immediate medical attention and were transported to a local hospital for further care,” Feld Entertainment said in a statement. It said the 11:00 am (1500 GMT) was stopped after the accident and the two other performances scheduled for the day had been cancelled. Shortly after the platform’s curtain dropped, the metal apparatus collapsed suddenly, and the women fell 25 to 40 feet (eight to 12 meters), landing on another performer on the ground, the Providence Journal cited police as saying.