Officials in the Miami Beach area have decided to extend their state of emergency decree through April 12. As a result, the Miami Beach City Commission will institute an 8 p.m. curfew and close eastbound lanes on three causeways each weekend. Furthermore, outdoor dining will shut down at 8 p.m., but restaurants will be allowed to offer delivery services until 6 a.m.
These regulations are primarily directed toward tourists. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, thousands have traveled to Miami, Florida for spring break. Over the last week, videos have shown large crowds partying in the streets, on the beach and in restaurants without masks. More than 1,000 arrests have been made since February 3. Of those arrests, more than 350 have been for felonies and 80 firearms have been seized.
Miami Beach City Commissioners are seeking to provide exceptions for actual residents of the area. While causeways will be closed each weekend, exceptions will made for drivers who can provide proof of residency. Miami residents will be exempt from MacArthur and Julia Tuttle causeways closures. Also, residents will be able to travel through the Venetian causeway during restricted hours.
Ultimately, City Manager Ray Aguila hopes these measures will help “contain the overwhelming crowd of visitors and the potential for violence, disruption and damage to property.”
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