Nearly 30 people were injured including children, when a pickup truck ploughed into a parade in New Orleans.

The pickup truck that slammed into a crowd and other vehicles, Photo: YouTube
The pickup truck that slammed into a crowd and other vehicles, Photo: YouTube

( — February 26, 2017) — The incident occurred on Saturday evening local time, when a pickup truck ploughed into a crowd which was enjoying the Krewe of 51st annual Endymion parade in New Orleans, one of several events leading up to the main Mardi Gras festivities.

A gray truck driven by a young man was moving near the parade downriver on N. Carrollton Avenue towards its intersection with Orleans Avenue at about 6.45 p.m. The truck first slammed into two vehicles, then veered left into the neutral ground before it came to rest against a large dump truck.

Several people were pinned underneath the dump truck in the aftermath of the crash. 

Police Superintendent, Michael Harrison, described the scene as horrific.

The first reports said that a dozen people were in a critical condition, but according to the latest news, none of the 28 reported injuries were life-threatening. 

The youngest victim was a 3 or 4-year-old, whereas the oldest were in their 40s. A female police officer was also injured. The wounded were taken to seven different hospitals, the New Orleans Advocate reported. 

The driver, who has been identified as a 25-year-old Neilson Rizzuto, was arrested on the scene and taken into custody. Investigators suspect that he was intoxicated, Police Superintendent Harrison reports.

Mayor of New Orleans, Mitch Landrieu, said that this was another case of certain individuals who made really bad decisions and ended up hurting many innocent people.

The first incident occurred five hours earlier on the uptown parade route, when a man was shot and wounded by a bullet that came through a portable toilet, placed close to the parade.

The investigators think that the gun was fired by accident.

The Krewe of Endymion parade is the largest of many Mardi Gras parades in New Orleans. Many people begin saving their viewing spots for this parade several days before it actually rolls. It was founded in 1966 and named after Endymion from Greek mythology.