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Officials are confident the Festival of Lights Parade is safe

Published: Nov. 22, 2021 at 5:38 PM CST
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - Tragedy in Wisconsin leaves 5 people dead and more than 40 injured after an SUV plowed through a Christmas Parade.

The circumstances surrounding the incident are still unclear, but with Rapid City’s own holiday parade scheduled for this weekend, questions are raised on how public safety officials try to make sure what happened in Wisconsin doesn’t happen at the Festival of Lights Parade.

“Even though it hasn’t happened here, what happened there in Wisconsin has definitely heightened our awareness,” said Kelvin Masur, Lieutenant for the Rapid City Police Department

Masur explained that for unique community events, the police department gages what resources are necessary to ensure smooth sailing.

The department looks at the location and number of people attending to determine how much manpower and traffic control is necessary, but officials remain confident the Parade will be a safe event.

“In Rapid City, we don’t have a long history of this type of chaos and I think it’s okay for us to feel safe here. It’s okay for us in a parade not to worry about this type of thing going on,” commented Rapid City Mayor Steve Allender.

“You know, if you have an event like what happened in Wisconsin, yeah it may create a sense of uneasiness, but again something like that hasn’t happened here in our community. Although it’s rose our awareness, it’s something that we’re not expecting here,” said Masur.

To ensure personal safety, Masur said be aware of your surroundings, wear suitable clothes for the weather, and keep all kids accounted for.

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