Beaches in Miami-Dade County will close on Fourth of July weekend and gatherings of 50 or more people will be banned over concerns of social distancing and the coronavirus.
County Mayor Carlos Gimenez will sign an emergency order to close beaches starting Friday, July 3, and ending Tuesday, July 7, his office announced Friday.
"As we continue to see more COVID-19 positive test results among young adults and rising hospitalizations, I have decided that the only prudent thing to do to tamp down this recent uptick is to crack down on recreational activities that put our overall community at higher risk," Gimenez said in a statement.
The order will also ban gatherings and parades of more than 50 people throughout the county "for whatever reason" from July 3-7. Gimenez added that all parks and beaches will be closed to the public in all cities and unincorporated areas to public viewing of fireworks. Fireworks displays must be viewed from one’s home or parked vehicle.
Earlier this week, Gimenez announced the county will be training "SURGE" teams to send to virus hot spots to reach out to residents and businesses and give them testing information, masks and sanitizer.
Fort Lauderdale and Broward officials have also discussed closing beaches during the holiday weekend, but a decision has still not been reached.
Miami-Dade beaches reopened earlier this month, but its initial reopening date was pushed back due to a countywide curfew issued because of protests over George Floyd's death.
Visitors are required to follow new social distancing guidelines to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 when on the beaches.
On Friday, Florida shattered its daily record for new coronavirus cases with more than 8,900 confirmed, pushing the state's total to nearly 123,000. Miami-Dade County's case total rose to 30,196, and the county's virus-related deaths were at 946 Thursday.