In wake of recent tragedies, safety is emphasized more for upcoming parades

Jul 8, 2022, 7:00 PM | Updated: Jul 13, 2022, 2:41 pm
Days of 47 events cancelled...
After tragedies at Fourth of July parades in Kaysville and Highland Park, Illinois, safety is being stressed more so for parades for the upcoming Pioneer Day holiday. (PHOTO: Daysof47.com)
(PHOTO: Daysof47.com)

SALT LAKE CITY — With the recent tragedies at parades in Kaysville and Highland Park, Illinois still etched in the minds of most people, safety is being stressed more and more as the Pioneer Day holiday approaches.

The Days of ’47 Parade in Salt Lake City is one of the longest in the country at 3 1/2 miles. As such, it has some of the strictest rules in place for a parade.

Safety of parades

“It happens in July, which is high heat,” said Greg James, executive vice president of The Days of ’47 Parade to KSL NewsRadio. “So, we don’t let children walk in the parade. They can ride in a vehicle. But they have to be strapped in and have a hand-hold, if they are under 14.”

Those rules have helped the Salt Lake City parade stay a safe one.

“We have a good track record of very, very few accidents in the parade,” James said.

The Bountiful Handcart Parade, which is set for July 16, is also stressing safety to all of its entries.

“Any entry, floats, bands, moving trailers with individuals on the back, if it’s flatbed trailer,” said Brett Morgan, an organizer for the Bountiful Handcarts Parade. “All of them have been informed and read through our specific rules.”

All of this comes after an 8-year-old girl from Davis County was killed on the Fourth of July as she participated in a parade in Kaysville with her cheer team.

Additionally, a mass shooting at a parade in Highland Park, Illinois that left seven people dead has also caused organizers to prepare even more for this year’s Days of ’47 Parade.

“The terrible events in Chicago and Highland Park have heighted our interest in making sure we have good security,” James said. “But the Salt Lake City Police Department and the city itself is anxious to have an event-free parade as they can be. We’ve added some additional security to the parade from that perspective this year.”

Mark Jackson, Jessica Lowell and Carlos Artiles contributed to this story.

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In wake of recent tragedies, safety is emphasized more for upcoming parades