NOFD urges rider safety after falls from floats - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

NOFD urges rider safety after falls from floats


NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - Doctors released two riders from the hospital after they fell from the upper levels of their floats during Sunday's Krewe of Alla.

According to a krewe spokesperson, the first rider who fell did not have his harness securely fastened. The second rider, who suffered more serious injuries, was not wearing the harness at all. That rider suffered a mild concussion.

A city ordinance requires all riders to wear a safety harness during parades. New Orleans firefighters say Carnival krewes are now asking for a refresher course before this week's celebrations begin.

"This is one of those situations where, it really comes down to a personal responsibility," said NOFD Chief Tim McConnell. "This is a situation much like a seatbelt in a car. If you have it, you have to use it."

New Orleans EMS responded to more than 400 calls over the weekend, many of those related to parades.

Paramedics say there are ways for riders to stay safe.

"We encourage riders to pay attention to their safety briefings," said Liz Belcher, EMS spokesperson. "Make sure they use all of their safety equipment that's available to them. We also suggest eye protection and if you're going to drink, please do so in moderation."

An Alla spokesperson said it's up to individual float lieutenants to make sure everyone is harnessed in properly, but there are times when riders may detach their harnesses to restock beads or use the restroom.

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