Over the weekend, Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez extended the County's state of emergency, ordering all marinas and boat launches, docking, fueling, and marine supply centers to close.
On the mayor’s YouTube channel, Mayor Gimenez said: “The best way for everyone to protect themselves from contracting COVID-19 is to follow recommendations of health officials.
Unfortunately, some of our residents are not taking this seriously. I was very disappointed to see social media posts yesterday showing people partying on their boats in close proximity. And I received information from our police department on the water that was quite disturbing.”
The order was issued soon after. Commercial fishing operations are exempt.
In response to reports and social media posts showing large sandbar parties and Intracoastal tie-ups, Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw announced Sunday that all boat ramps and marinas in the county will be closed until further notice. Commercial fisherman will be exempt.
“This order is necessary in response to people gathering in large groups on the sandbars, Intracoastal lands and waterways without observing social distancing to prevent community spread of COVID-19. Marina supply, fueling and service activities necessary to support commercial fishing and commercial marine operations may continue to operate,” the statement read.
Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office and other law enforcement agencies will be enforcing the closures and monitoring waterways.