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Olympic Torch Dies For First Time Due To 'Malfunctioning Burner'

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OLYMPIC TORCH DAVID FOLLETT
The Flame went out as David Follett carried the Torch on the leg between Torrington and Bideford | PA

There was brief embarrassment for Olympic organisers on Monday when the Torch went out.

The blip in proceedings happened while the Torch was attached to the side of bearer David Follett’s wheelchair in Great Torrington, Devon.

A London 2012 spokesperson told the Huffington Post UK that it was out only for a very short time and that a malfunctioning burner was to blame.

She said: “The Flame went out due to a malfunctioning burner. It is not uncommon for a Flame to go out and this can happen for a number of reasons, for example, in extreme winds.

“We keep the Mother Flame in specially designed miners lanterns so if the flame does go out for some reason on the Relay we relight it from the source of the flame.”

Monday is day three of the relay with 113 torchbearers carrying the Olympic Flame 135.30 miles through 23 communities between Exeter and Taunton.

It will end with an evening celebration at Somerset Cricket Ground.

During the day the Flame will pass a number of iconic landmarks including the Taw Bridge and Dunster Castle.

Today’s Torchbearers include Triple Jump World record holder Jonathan Edwards, who will carry the Flame in Ilfracombe and cricketer Marcus Trescothick, who will carry the Flame in Taunton.

At the evening celebration a cauldron will be lit to mark the culmination of the day’s festivities. The Flame will then be transferred to a lantern and it will stay in Taunton overnight.

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