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Boaters at Haulover Sandbar Forgot About Social Distancing This Weekend

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It's Monday, and you're hopefully getting back into the swing of things after a weekend of social distancing and surface disinfecting. In a different time, maybe you would have spent Saturday and Sunday at bars, clubs, restaurants, or other fun places. But last weekend, you avoided such spots because you give a damn about flattening the coronavirus curve — and we salute you.

Apparently, some people think they're invincible, though. Despite orders to stay at least six feet away from others and avoid gatherings of more than ten people to help control the coronavirus' spread, the Haulover Sandbar was packed with boaters and Jet Skiers Saturday.

Videos posted on social media show hundreds of boats crowding the sandbar and people gathered close together:

The Miami Herald reported that on Saturday morning, Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez signed an emergency order prohibiting "rafting," the tying together of boats so people can move between them. Partiers might not have received the memo before heading out on their boats, but social distancing guidelines have been in place for days.

A sandbar party planned for Sunday must have been the last straw for the county mayor — Gimenez on Saturday ordered all marinas and boat ramps closed countywide.

In a statement about the closures, Gimenez said people need to be responsible. And he called out those not following social distancing recommendations.

"These sacrifices in our social lives are critical NOW in order to defeat COVID-19," Gimenez said. "Those of you not following these guidelines are putting others at risk, perhaps your own family and friends. And you could be contributing to a much longer scenario and further shutdowns in our community."

Remember how in grade school if one student did something bad, the rest of the class had to begrudgingly pay for it? Yep — people partying on their boats in large groups ruined it for responsible boaters looking for a little quiet time out on the water.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis also had some words for people getting together in large groups:

If you're having trouble understanding why it's important to stay home as much as possible and avoid interaction with others, look no further than this cautionary tale out of Italy, where hospitals are maxed out and positive cases and deaths are surging because residents wouldn't follow suggestions.

As of this morning, the Florida Department of Health confirmed a total of 1,171 COVID-19 cases in Florida — 267 of which are in Miami-Dade — and 14 deaths. 

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