BUNOL, Spain — More than 20,000 people have been drenched in red pulp after hurling tons of ripe tomatoes at each other in the annual “Tomatina” street battle in eastern Spain.

Extra security measures were taken at the fiesta in Bunol this year following the vehicle attacks in and near Barcelona this month, with some 700 agents deployed.

The party saw 160 tons of tomatoes offloaded from trucks into crowds jamming the town’s streets for the hour-long battle Wednesday.

Participants, including many tourists, don swimming goggles to protect their eyes.

Organizers hose the streets down within minutes of the event’s end at noon, while participants use public showers.

The event, which costs $12 to attend, was inspired by a food fight between local children in 1945 in the tomato-producing region.

Author photo
The AP is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, as a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members, it can maintain its single-minded focus on newsgathering and its commitment to the highest standards of objective, accurate journalism.