LAFAYETTE, LA — Queen Evangeline’s Parade is one of Acadiana’s largest and on the heels of a second tragic death in New Orleans, safety was on the mind of many in attendance.
“You have your die-hards that have to have their beads,” Lawrence Huter commented as rain poured down Monday afternoon
Rain or not, people lined the streets to catch something at the 81st Queen Evangeline’s Parade. Huter has seen each one for five years as a float driver.
“You do not realize how many policemen Lafayette has until you’ve driven the entire parade route. That’s for sure,” Huter stated.
The Lafayette Police Department (LPD) plays a pivotal role in keeping everyone at parades safe. Each driver has to pass a safety course provided by LPD.
Barricades are another feature pivotal to protecting people who go to Lafayette’s parades. The death of a man during a New Orleans parade reportedly occurred where there was no barricade separating people from the street.
As a mother Janice Trahan appreciates the extra layer of protection, “With the younger ones being so quick on their feet, it does help to have the barricades up just to keep an eye on them.”
New Orleans Police banned floats linked together pulled by one tractor for the rest of 2020. In Lafayette, families are pleased to have no tragedies this year and hope it stays that way.
Trahan added, “(It’s) Family fun-oriented. Safe, so it makes it fun”.