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Carnival 2022: Safety a number one priority

Published: May. 26, 2021 at 9:49 PM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Carnival season is still months away, but krewe and city leaders are already discussing plans for next year, keeping safety top of mind.

The Mayor’s Mardi Gras Advisory Council met for the first time in months and it was a packed house. The big topic of the evening was about safety on the parade routes, and safety as it pertains to tandem floats.

This coming carnival season, parade-goers can expect every tandem float to have a safety barrier system in place between each connected float.

The barrier would be a stretchy netting material that would be installed on the outside of a float and extend up to the first level. It would have enough give for when floats make big turns on the route.

Krewe officials believe this will prevent people from walking or accidentally falling in between two floats.

“I think people get caught up in the moment of carnival and so that’s the idea, it’s a safety device and I think that just one more step to making carnival safer,” said Barry Kern of Kern Studios. “This will be the new thing that’ll stop you from being able to even go in harm’s way.”

“It’s best to be proactive, but sometimes you can’t anticipate things like this,” said carnival historian Arthur Hardy. “But it’s a good solution and an inexpensive one, and once again common sense prevails, so I think we’ve gotten over this hurdle.”

All eyes are on fall festivals like French Quarter Fest and Jazz Fest to see what happens because it could be a good indication of how Carnival 2022 will look.

Krewe and city officials also pushed for more people to get vaccinated to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

For now, an ordinance on the tandem float safety changes will head to the city council for a vote.

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