A four-year-old girl died after a tragic accident at a Santa Claus parade in Yarmouth, N.S., police said on Saturday as a witness describing a terror scene that shattered the holiday feast of the small port.
The girl, which was not publicly identified, ran along a fleeting parade fleet on one of the city's main thoroughfares when it fell below her just before 7:00. local time, police said.
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She was urgently taken to a local paramedical hospital, but she was declared dead shortly.
Cpl. Dal Hutchinson, a public information officer with the RCNA in Nova Scotia, described the event as "very, very tragic – and also very traumatic for everyone there.
"I understand that there is a large group of people there – families – who follow the Santa Claus parade when this incident took place," Hutchinson said in an interview Saturday night.
He added that anyone who witnessed the incident should talk about it with others and ask for support to cope with the trauma.
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"Our thoughts are with this little girl's family in very, very difficult time."
Vance Webb, a retired mechanic living on the outskirts of Yarmouth, attended the Saturday parade with his wife, stepmother and three grandchildren.
"I just watched the parade and then, about 30 meters away, I heard – suddenly, the floater stops and I see something on the ground," Webb said in a phone interview.
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Then suddenly, I just heard screaming. It was pretty close to us.
Webb said the whole scene has come down to "chaos," because people have realized what happened.
"People 50 meters away from him – none of us are all right, all adults have been crying, wherever we saw, there were hundreds of people crying," Webb said.
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Parade organizers did not respond immediately to comments on Saturday night.