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Miami Beach official recommending curfew through end of spring break

Miami Beach official recommending curfew through end of spring break
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The city manager in Miami Beach is recommending police keep a curfew in place through the end of spring break as authorities struggle with massive crowds gathering there. 

“These crowds are in the thousands," Raul Aguila told the Miami Herald. "We’re at capacity.”

Video and photos taken over the past several days show packed bars and restaurants and many people partying in the streets of Miami Beach while not wearing masks or practicing social distancing. 

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The emergency order and curfew, which went into effect at 9 p.m. Saturday, will expire in 72 hours. Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber said earlier this weekend he would meet with the City Commission on Sunday to address the measures. That meeting is slated for 3 p.m. 

“If you're coming here because you think anything goes, you're going to have a terrible time. We're going to arrest you. We've made hundreds and hundreds of arrests,” Gelber warned people looking to come to the city to escape more restrictive public health measures during the coronavirus pandemic. 

The order also blocks most traffic on the eastbound lanes of the three main causeways that connect Miami Beach to much of the surrounding area, the Herald noted. 

“Last night if you saw the photos of Ocean Drive, it was quite simply overwhelming,” Aguila said, the newspaper reported. “It looked like a rock concert. You couldn’t see pavement and you couldn’t see grass. So we feel that this is necessary not only to protect our residents but our visitors, including our spring breakers, who we want to keep safe.” 

He told the newspaper that he is recommending that the emergency measures stay in place through April 12.