Miami Beach, Fla., declared a state of emergency Saturday over concern about large crowds of spring breakers gathering in the city.
Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber (D) said during a news conference on Saturday that new measures will be implemented that are essentially purposed to reduce the number of people coming to the area.
Gelber announced an 8 p.m. curfew in the Entertainment District, and a restriction of east-bound traffic on city causeways that will only be accessible to residents and hotel guests.
The measures go into effect at 9 p.m. Saturday, and will remain in effect for 72 hours. Gelber said that he will hold an emergency meeting with the City Commission on Sunday to address the measures.
The city later posted the emergency order to its Twitter account. According to the order, these actions are separate from those that the city has put in place to combat COVID-19.
City of Miami Beach Announces 8 p.m. Curfew in High Impact Zone Starting Tonight Officials Also Impose Additional Spring Break Emergency Measures pic.twitter.com/3lmt3FsbJw
#MaskUpMiamiBeach (@MiamiBeachNews) March 20, 2021
The news comes as photos from the area show crowds of people that have flocked to the city and gathered on its beaches, ignoring COVID-19 protocols.
Miami Beachs interim city Manager Raul Aguila said on Saturday that hes received emails from businesses who have voluntarily closed or dont want to open due to the crowds.
Earlier this month, the Miami Beach Police Department had to disperse a crowd of spring breakers by shooting pepper balls. The debacle began after a crowd of over 200 people blocked an intersection.
According to NBC News affiliate in South Florida, police on Friday had to use pepper balls once again to disperse a crowd after a fight broke out at a restaurant.
At night, there is no question that it becomes a place that feels a little out of control or a lot out of control, Gelber said on Saturday. At times, you see things that you realize shouldnt happen, and no community should have to endure.