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Are changes in store for parades following Kaysville girl's death?

Posted at 8:52 AM, Jul 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-06 11:10:52-04

NEPHI, Utah — Days after an 8-year-old girl was killed during the Fourth of July Parade in Kaysville, city officials remain quiet regarding the incident and whether any changes will be made regarding future parade operations.

Macie Hill died Monday after the accident that occurred while she participated in the annual parade.

WATCH: Family and friends of 8-year-old child killed in Fourth of July parade gather for prayer vigil

The unfortunate incident is a familiar one in Utah, having come five years after an 11-year-old was killed during a parade in Nephi.

Grace Eyre was struck by a trailer during the 2017 Mammoth Day Parade running down Main Street. Eyre was sitting on the back of a pickup truck pulling a flatbed trailer when she slipped while trying to exit the vehicle and was run over by the trailer.

Following Eyre's death, officials in Nephi made changes to parade safety measures.

"When something like that happens, you always want to say 'What could we have done better? How could we have prevented this?,' and it, of course, leads to an evaluation of rules and regulations," Nephi City Administrator Seth Atkinson told FOX 13 News on Tuesday.

Atkinson said the discussion surrounding the 2017 incident included whether to even hold the parade in the future.

Candy tosses are popular at local community parades, and Eyre was allegedly trying to gather candy when she was struck and killed.

"That just had us question how do you do candy? Do you have candy at all? I think the next year we just banned it outright," recalled Atkinson. "If you're throwing out candy, kids tend to come into the parade route and collect that candy, so you've got a risk there."

Atkinson said all parade regulations instituted following Eyre's death centered on candy distribution. Nephi instituted a rule for future parades mandating walkers be on the edge of routes making sure no one gets close to vehicles and the restocking of candy is not allowed during the event.

Five years after Eyre's death, Atkinson says her memory continues to guide parade safety now, and hopefully in the future.

"You never forget, you always remember something that happened that affected your community so much. Twenty years from now I hope those rules are still instituted so that this never, ever, ever happens again.