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Safety concerns brought up by Town for Santa Parade

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A parade. It may seem like a routine thing that brings nothing but joy to a community but a recent incident on the east coast has prompted some security questions for a parade here in The Pas.
The Pas Community Renewal Corporation is hosting their annual Santa Parade on December 14th and sent in a formal request to the Town to allow the parade to go through the community. While such requests are rarely a cause for concern to Town council, an incident earlier this month that left a four-year-old child dead has caused some questions to be asked.
An accident at the Santa Claus parade in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, on Saturday seen a four-year-old girl in the community fall under a float in the parade. The girl was rushed to hospital but died a short time later.
The accident prompted Town of The Pas Mayor Herb Jaques to ask what safety measures are in place to prevent a similar incident in The Pas.
“You can’t legislate common sense right, but I want to just mention do we have anything in place that would prevent a four-year-old from falling under a float,” questioned Jaques. “I do not want that happening here so how do we ensure to the best of our ability that a four-year-old a child is not going to run up to a float and get run over? What do we do?”
The question prompted some recommendations, including asking member of The Pas Fire Department and the OCN Blizzard hockey club to participate by walking alongside the floats to be an extra set of eyes for young children who are often running out to grab candy being tossed from floats. Councillor Trevor Lane also suggested the fire department hand out information to float operators and riders as well as people in the crowd while also having a brief discussion with parade goers, advising them of the risks.
Often The Pas Fire Department does participate in the parades, however their involvement is often limited to driving fire trucks or other emergency equipment in the parade and as such they are often in one section of the parade as opposed to being throughout the length of the parade.
In addition, the Town will be asking for a speed limit of five kilometres per hour for the floats.
The requested route for the parade was approved by council. The Santa Parade is scheduled to be held on December 14th at 5:00 p.m.

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Trent Allen
EDITOR
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