TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Hundreds of thousands of revelers left behind quite a bit of trash.
Shortly after the Gasparilla Parade of Pirates wrapped up and spectators left the parade route, the cleanup began. It’s safe to say, crews have their work cut out for them.
With more than 100 years on the books, in many respects the Gasparilla celebration works much like a machine – with crews picking up garbage and gathering barricades right after the last floats passed.
The parade itself seems to grow every year. And every year, the Tampa Police Department coordinates security. “It’s always our job to make sure this is safe and we have enough forces in place to make that happen,” Police Chief Eric Ward said.
And Tampa Fire Rescue is also on hand for anyone who may need medical attention. “Mostly drunk calls … falls, some fights and occasional medical emergency as well,” Brandon Buchanan with Tampa Fire Rescue said. They’re on bikes and in golf carts because navigating these crowds can be a challenge. “South side of town, estimates of 300.000 to 400,000 people all crammed into one spot and sometimes it’s just not feasible. You can’t go around where there’s no where to go around,” Buchanan said. Firefighters set up a triage tent to deal with medical issues away from the crowds.
Initial reports from Tampa Police as of 5 p.m. Saturday are eight people arrested. Arrests include one each of disorderly intoxication, public urination, disorderly conduct, possession of an open container, criminal use of a personal ID, and battery. There were two arrests for possession of cocaine. There were 35 people transported to the hospital, one of them was a trauma alert.