At least 20 killed, dozens injured in electrocution accident atop Haiti Carnival float

Posted at 11:56 AM, Feb 17, 2015
and last updated 2015-02-17 11:56:24-05

PORT-AU-PRINCE (PIX11) — Carnival celebrations in Haiti’s capital turned to mourning after dozens were electrocuted atop a float.

Nadia Lochard, a coordinator for the Department of Civil Protection, told NBC that there are at least 20 dead, and 46 injured.

A float belonging to one band Barikad Crew traveled into the path of a low-hanging wire, and someone on the float reached up to push it out of the way, witnesses say.

In a bright flash of light and sparks, panic ensued and float passengers tried jumping into the crowd, which caused even more injuries.

The President of the small country offered his “sincerest condolences”:

#Kanaval2015 quickly changed from tweets and pictures of jubilation to grief.

Though the festival traditionally lasts three days, many have called for it to be ended early. An announcement will come later Tuesday.