Float crashes, injuring 20 people at Rio's Carnival parade

A member of the Paraiso de Tuiuti samba school reacts after a float crash during Carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017. A float in Rio de Janeiro's world famous Carnival parade crashed Sunday evening, and police said several people were injured. (AP Photo/Carlos Junior)
Firefighters carry an injured person on a stretcher during Carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017. A float at the Rio de Janeiro's Carnival parade on Sunday crashed injuring several people according to policemen at the scene. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)
Members of the Paraiso de Tuiuti samba school react after a float crash during Carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017. A float in Rio de Janeiro's world famous Carnival parade crashed Sunday evening, and police said several people were injured. (AP Photo/Carlos Junior)

RIO DE JANEIRO — A float crashed during Rio de Janeiro's world famous Carnival parade Sunday evening and injured at least 20 people, including three people reported in serious condition, but organizers proceeded with the show.

The incident involved the last float of the first samba school parading through Rio's Sambadrome. The float of samba school Paraiso de Tuiuti crashed into a fence that separates the stands from the pavement, injuring spectators, revelers and journalists. One reporter had an exposed fracture.

Police began an investigation as soon as the float finished its transit through the Sambadrome. Police investigator William Lourenco Bezerra said the three drivers of the float would be questioned Monday morning, adding that one already had been identified as the main focus of the probe.

"The last float went into reverse and ended up pressing revelers against the fence on one side. That caused chaos. Then the drivers made a quick maneuver to the opposite direction and injured more people," Bezerra said. "The main driver of the float mixed with the rest of the samba school and left. But he has already been identified and will be investigated."

Rio's state health secretary said in a statement that eight of the 20 people involved in the incident were in hospital and three women were in serious condition.

The pavement of the Sambadrome was wet because of a persistent drizzle. Rain can make the big floats harder to guide.

The drizzle also created difficulties for firefighters as they a fence to remove two women drenched in blood.

In a statement, samba school Paraiso do Tuiuti said it "deeply regrets" the incident. "Our board offers its deepest sentiments and is open to make any clarifications as soon as all the causes of the accident are investigated. We will offer all the assistance to the victims of this irreparable incident," the samba school said.

Despite the accident, the head of the Rio parade, Elmo dos Santos, said that "the show must go on."

"The rain made the car veer to the left. Organizers tried to adjust, but then they lost control. It is all regrettable, but we cannot stop," dos Santos told journalists.

Elmano Santos, a reveler from Rio, said the float missed him by inches (centimeters).

"It was very quick. I saw a few journalists taking pictures close to the float get injured, he told The Associated Press.

Paraiso do Tuiuti was the first of six samba schools parading in the night's extravaganza at the Sambadrome, which was ran until early Monday.

Only revelers at the entrance of the Sambadrome were aware of the incident. Many who found out later agreed with the decision to carry on.

"It is all very sad, but to stop Carnival would create an even bigger problem," said Jonas Elias, a tourist from Salvador. "Of course this spoils the party a bit, but to frustrate all this crowd would make the tragedy even bigger."

People also read these

London fashion: Versus rocks on; Wickstead favors...

Feb 18, 2017

London Fashion Week has kicked off its second day, with Saturday's shows including the latest...

US vice president visits former Nazi...

Feb 20, 2017

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence toured the site of a former Nazi concentration camp

Dresses that tell a story: Princess Diana's life...

Feb 22, 2017

It's been 20 years since Diana died in a Paris car crash at the age of 36, but the public's...

Brazil's Carnival begins with parades, parties...

Feb 25, 2017

Revelers all over Brazil began Carnival celebrations after an odd opening ceremony in Rio marked by...

Rio samba school angers farmers with...

Feb 27, 2017

A leading samba school in Rio de Janeiro's world famous Carnival parade paid a tribute to native...

About Us

Kayak Away aims to bring the latest news, techniques, destinations, and stories that inspire you to get on the water. We are all here together to share all the awesome tips and tricks to kayak.

Contact us: sales[at]kayakaway.com

Subscribe Now!