Crowds visiting Miami Beach City, United States, during spring break have forced the city commission to extend COVID-19 lockdown to 12 April with an 8:00 p.m. curfew and a 10 p.m. causeway closure as a means to stop the spread of the coronavirus, APA reports citing Sputnik.
The curfew will be active from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m., as called for in an emergency meeting by the city commission on Sunday, according to Local 10 news agency. Restaurants will be allowed to operate for food deliveries until 6 a.m., however, their seating areas must be closed at 8 p.m.
On Sunday night, the High Impact Zone, also known as the city's entertainment district, faced its second night of mandatory curfews. On Saturday, police had to fire pepper-balls into a crowd that refused to follow curfew guidelines.
"The curfew went well. We obviously, with the late notification, expected there to be some residuals or people who had not heard that the curfew was in place ... At 9:00 p.m. we started actively moving and people started going to their hotels and Airbnb," Miami Beach police chief Richard Clements said as quoted by Local 10.
The unruly crowds have also threatened some local businesses: some restaurants had to shut down after some of their customers left without paying or damaged outside seating areas, the website reports.
Over 1,000 arrests have been made in the past month. Miami Beach police said they have arrested over 50 people and confiscated eight guns over the weekend alone.
The US has the highest cumulative total of COVID-19 cases in the world at nearly 30 million.