Florida attorney Daniel Uhlfelder has filed a lawsuit against Gov. Ron DeSantis to close all beaches in Florida to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
The lawsuit wants the court to force DeSantis to close all the beaches in the state. On Friday, DeSantis closed beaches in Broward and Palm Beach County and suggested for residents to practice social distancing if going to the state’s other beaches.
DeSantis also has a message for college students who recently went to Florida’s beaches for spring break.
“The message I think for spring breakers is that the party is over in Florida,” DeSantis said on “Fox and Friends” Thursday. “You’re not going to be able to congregate on any beach in the state.
“Many of the hot spots that people like to go to, whether it’s Miami Beach, Fort Lauderdale and Clearwater Beach, are closed entirely for the time being,” he added.
Grant Bridges, a Pensacola Beach lifeguard, told the Pensacola News Journal that people haven’t followed guidelines to stay in groups of 10 or less on Casino Beach.
“We have groups of 30, 40, 50 high schoolers going there every day,” Bridges said. “We have Navy guys going behind, too, and wrestling and getting intoxicated. These are the facts. Really what concerns me is Casino Beach. That’s where we have the most rescues. That’s where we have the most people go.”
VISIT FLORIDA chair Virginia Haley said she supports letting local governments make the decision. “There are different parts of the state with different highs and lows,” she said. “There are beaches in the state that are not crowded.”
The lawsuit says that Uhlfelder has urged DeSantis to close the rest of the beaches in the state multiple times.
“The Governor has the responsibility to initiate immediate action to cope with the emerging health problems and try to prevent the spread of infectious diseases,” the suit reads.
“This is a public safety issue,” Uhlfelder said. “(DeSantis) has just endangered the whole country.”
“You can’t have social distancing and open beaches,” he said. “It’s impossible.”