Officials Share Mardi Gras Safety Tips

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As we gear up for the vibrant celebrations of the upcoming Mardi Gras Season, the Houma Police Department and Terrebonne Parish Sheriff’s Office want to keep the parade atmosphere safe and enjoyable for everyone.  Sheriff Soignet said, “Mardi Gras season has been a part of Terrebonne Parish and our culture for as long as most of us can remember. I believe it goes without saying that as we have continued to grow and evolve over the years with implementation of new safety practices, Mardi Gras is certainly no exception. The Terrebonne Parish Sheriff’s Office stands ready to protect our parish, residents, and visitors to ensure and safe prosperous Carnival Season for all.”

Our local law enforcement wants everyone to partake in the joyous parades and festivities, but it’s crucial to do so responsibly. The following are reminders, tips, and a list of violations to remember during the season.

Enjoy the Parades Responsibly

  • We want everyone to have a fantastic time during the parades. Please be mindful of your surroundings and follow safety guidelines. Keep an eye on your belongings and, if attending with children, ensure they stay close to you.

Drink Responsibly, Don’t Drive

  • If you choose to indulge in alcoholic beverages, we urge you to do so responsibly. Designate a sober driver or utilize public transportation options. The safety of our community is paramount, and driving under the influence is not only illegal but jeopardizes the well-being of everyone on the road.

Officers on Parade Route

  • Our dedicated officers will be actively monitoring the parade route to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone. Please cooperate with them and follow their instructions. Their presence is aimed at safeguarding the public and maintaining order.

Be Courteous to Officers

  • Our officers will be working long hours to secure the festivities. We kindly ask for your cooperation and courtesy. Remember, they are here to ensure your safety, and treating them with respect goes a long way.

Let’s Celebrate Responsibly

  • Mardi Gras is a time for celebration, camaraderie, and joy. Let’s make it memorable for all the right reasons. By following these guidelines, we can create an atmosphere where everyone can revel in the festivities safely.

General Safety Tips:

  • Park vehicles in secure areas and do not leave valuables in plain sight. Utilize the trunk to store valuables.
  • Attend parades in groups and establish a well-known meeting place ahead of time in case anyone becomes separated.
  • Make sure small children are always accompanied by an adult.
  • Teach your children to stay calm if lost and go to a uniformed police officer.
    • Teach your child not to be afraid of police officers and if possible, take them up to 1 prior to the parade.
    • If no police officer is in your area teach your child to go to another parent with children for help.
  • Do not wander down empty streets late at night or in the early morning hours. This is the time when you are more likely to be targeted for a crime. Stay in populated, well-lit areas, and travel in groups!
  • If you must carry a purse, carry it across your torso and place important items in the front pocket.
  • If you need police assistance during a parade, go to the nearest intersection and advise a uniformed police officer.
  • Maintain a safe distance from floats and all participants of the parade.

Violations that are governed by law which could result in arrest:

  • Never follow behind floats, bands, etc. 
  • Do not throw any object in the direction of floats, band members, or any parade participants.
  • Glass containers are prohibited on the parade route.
  • No underage drinking is allowed. Uniformed and plainclothes officers will be patrolling behind and within crowds to identify and arrest persons engaging in criminal activity.
  • Do not cross the barricades for any reason.
  • Bicycles, skateboards, and motorized scooters are prohibited from being ridden on the route.
  • Materials known as “silly string” and “snap & pops” along with similar products are illegal. Possession of any of these products are strictly prohibited.
  • All dogs present on the parade route must be secured with a leash, as well as a muzzle.