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Eighteen wedding reception guests were injured, two of them critically, when a wooden balcony collapsed Saturday night.

The people were gathered on a backyard deck on a home at 3609 E. Escalade Ave. (8730 South) about 9 p.m. when it collapsed, sending people into oak brush and a concrete patio 10 feet below, said Ron Morris, Salt Lake County Fire battalion chief.Neighbor Troy Vigil was standing outside the home when he heard a series of pops that sounded like "timber falling."

"I ran out to the deck after I realized what was happening and people just started screaming," Vigil said.

Six people were taken to area hospitals. Two of them - an elderly woman with a broken femur and a man with internal injuries - were in critical condition.

Twelve others were being treated at the scene for minor injuries.

An investigation is pending, but Morris said there was "possibly a little too much load on the balcony."

The owners of the home declined comment and kept reporters and photographers off the property.

Morris described the accident as a "lean-to collapse," adding he was uncertain about the age of the balcony.

"It's a real shock, you never expect something like this to happen," said one neighbor who asked not to be identified. "I entertain on my redwood deck all the time, but this gives a me a whole new worry."