At least 12 dead in Carnival parade accident

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JACMEL, HAITI - FEBRUARY 27: A float depicting the Haitian presidential palace and papier mache figures of (L-R) former Haitian president Jean-Bertrand Aristide, Haitian president Rene Preval and former president Jean-Claude Duvalier makes its way along the parade route during carnival weekend in Jacmel, Haiti, February 27, 2011. This year's celebration was met with mixed emotion as the memory of the 2010 earthquake, which forced the cancellation of last year's event, loomed large. (Photo by Allison Shelley/Getty Images)

(CNN) — At least 12 people were killed during Haiti’s national Carnival parade early Tuesday in an accident involving an electrical shock on a float, the nation’s communications minister said.

An “accident following an electrical shock” happened on a parade float in Port-au-Prince at 2:48 a.m. ET Tuesday, Haitian Communications Minister Rothschild Francis Junior said.

The government spokesman did not elaborate on the accident.

“My sincerest sympathies with the victims of the grave incident this morning at the Champ de Mars celebrating Mardi Gras Carnaval,” Haitian President Michel Martelly said on Twitter.

The accident happened just hours into Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday, the culmination of pre-Lenten Carnival celebrations.

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