Horses help police with Mardi Gras crowd control

Mardi Gras is a busy time for members of the Mobile Police Department’s Mounted Patrol Unit.

Their presence can be seen up and down parade routes.

In addition, this special unit hosts a school to teach other horse patrols, from around the country, about crowd control.

That school kicked off Wednesday.

COLD, RAINY WEATHER

You can’t blame the horses if they aren’t happy with the weather, trying to be graceful while walking through the mud and water.

There were muddy conditions on  the first day of the 22nd annual Mardi Gras Mounted School put on by the Mobile Police Mounted Auxiliary.

Sgt. Eddie Carr with the Mobile Police Department said, “This year, we have approximately 37 to 47 attendees, and they come from all over the country.  They come here to learn to train their horses, and learn themselves how to control horses in situations that they normally wouldn’t see.”

That sums up Mardi Gras nicely., as some of the visiting police officers are already finding out.

VISITORS FROM GERMANY

Among the participants this year are two officers from Germany.

Yvonne Friedrichs said, “We are two police officers from Germany, and we are here for an internship for four weeks by the police.”

While participating in the internship, the police officers from Germany are refining their skills on horseback.

But, they’re getting into the carnival spirit, too.

Katrin Herdert said,  “We’ve been to Mardi Gras and a ball last Saturday.  It was a lot of fun, and we enjoyed it.”

A SPECIAL TIME OF YEAR

They may soon find out the horses in the mounted auxiliary have acquired a taste for Mardi Gras, too.

We found one that likes Moon Pies.

Friedrichs said, “We like Mobile:  many crazy people, a lot of crazy people.”

The school lasts for one week.

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