Santa pulled over by police in Belfast for not having lights

Santa was forced to park his sleigh until it complied with road rules

Santa Claus waves from his sleigh float at the 94th Annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on 26 November, 2020 in New York City. A Santa in Belfast was pulled over by police on Monday, 14 December, 2020, after not having the right lights.
Santa Claus waves from his sleigh float at the 94th Annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on 26 November, 2020 in New York City. A Santa in Belfast was pulled over by police on Monday, 14 December, 2020, after not having the right lights.

Santa Claus appears to have landed himself on a Belfast police department’s naughty list after embarking on a sleigh tour without having the correct lights on. 

Police in West Belfast stopped a Santa’s sleigh tour on Monday night after noticing that the horse-pulled sleigh was in violation of road rules. 

The Falls Resident Association Santa Sleigh tour had been making its way through a local neighbourhood to hand out presents to children when they were stopped by officers. 

The traffic stop led to the tour being delayed while the correct lights were fixed onto Santa’s sleigh.

Robert McClenaghan, or, “Santa”, told Belfast Live the situation reminded him of a popular Christmas tale.

“We were told there'd been a complaint about Santa's sleigh and the cop said we had to have a white light on the front and a red one on the back. I thought it was a bit like the Grinch to be honest,” he said.

Lisa Lynn of the Falls Residents Association told the outlet it was an "unfortunate" incident, particularly given that organizers had already cleared the event with police.

“We had spoken to the community policing team before we set off and they seemed happy enough, so we were surprised by what happened,” she said.

Despite the delay, however, the Santa sleigh tour was able to continue, with Ms Lynn saying the program was “back up and running again very quickly and no children missed out on seeing Santa”.

The sleigh tour was so successful, it will be hitting the road again Tuesday night - this time, in full accordance with the law.

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