Miami Beach declares state of emergency due to spring break

A curfew will be in effect at 8 p.m. for 72 hours, which began Saturday as Miami struggles to control spring break visitors and their “anything goes” attitude. The order primarily effects Miami’s entertainment district, requiring bars and restaurants to close at 8pm and traffic restrictions in high impact zones.

“The problem is there’s a few things happening simultaneously, there’s a confluence of challenging circumstances,”  Mayor Dan Gelber told USA TODAY. “We’ve got too many people and too many looking to act out while there’s a pandemic going on. So we’ve got all this happening simultaneously, so it’s become a tinder.”

There is simply too much disorder for the Miami Beach Police Department to handle, Gelber said.

Some local businesses have already taken steps of their own to address the stress of so many visitors to the area that have been causing disturbances. 

The Clevelander South Beach, a Miami institution on Ocean Drive, opted to halt its food and beverage services, closing the doors to its on-site restaurants temporarily amid spring break chaos until Wednesday.

Because most pandemic restrictions have been lifted in Florida, people are coming with an “anything goes” mentality.

“It’s like a triple threat: We’ve got too many people, too many coming with a desire to go wild and we have the virus,” Gelber said. “It really poses a multifaceted peril for us.”

The city has also implemented “zero tolerance for all of our ordinances,” Gelber said, which means Miami Beach Police are making arrests for having open containers and more.