A massive heat wave is hitting the OC and locals need a place to cool down. So, city officials took action. Orange County beaches reopened so you can hit the surf and sand. Social distancing rules still apply, so make sure to stay six feet apart from others at all times.
In spite of the opening, officials have expressed concern that outsiders would flood the area and violate social distancing rules" County Supervisor Lisa Bartlett told the LA Times.
What will you be able to do?
The sand and the ocean are open to visitors for recreation. However, parking lots will remain closed and officials are advising outsiders to stay away from the beaches.
Bartlett went on to say that Orange County has been overloaded with people coming from the Inland Empire and other counties in the past few weeks.
As temperatures soar into the high 80s and 90s this week across Southern California, officials worry those numbers will increase.
Although Orange County beaches are open to the public, some cities have taken extra safety precautions during COVID-19.
Orange County keeps beaches open, but tells outsiders to stay away during heat wave https://t.co/hRNVJmacYQ— Los Angeles Times (@Los Angeles Times)1587666781.0
The city of Laguna Beach has closed off sections off its sand in their jurisdiction, says the Times.
While officials in cities such as San Clemente have pushed for beaches to reopen for active recreation along the sand and county trails, others aren't so sure it's a good idea.
Laguna Beach's Mayor Bob Whalen was one of the county officials opposing the reopening of local beaches.
Summer weather is here! Stay safe and practice social distancing when going outside: keep at least 6 feet, or one s… https://t.co/YBuACD7hZs— OC Parks (@OC Parks)1587656650.0
"This means that visitors will be heading to just the few beaches and trails that are open and practicing social distancing will be difficult and by some ignored,” Whalen wrote.
He went on to say “we have all seen the video from the beaches in Florida that recently reopened and there is no reason to expect a different outcome here with the first warm weather coming.”
In neighboring Orange County, officials similarly warned against flocking to its famous beaches as forecasts call f… https://t.co/EbtVxAppH9— Ron Bassilian (@Ron Bassilian)1587565800.0
California Governor Gavin Newsom's March 19 stay at home order is still in place. It states that residents should stay inside except for essential activities such as grocery shopping, pharmacy runs, emergencies, and necessary physical activities.