Spring break invasion of South Florida spurred by cheap fares and lax Covid-19 restrictions

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  perrie-halpern  •  3 weeks ago  •  28 comments

By:   Corky Siemaszko

Spring break invasion of South Florida spurred by cheap fares and lax Covid-19 restrictions
The spring break invasion of South Florida is being spurred by cheap fares and lax Covid-19 restrictions while even more infectious variants multiply.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



Cheap flights, cheap hotels and the chance to party in a place with lots of sunshine and virtually no Covid-19 restrictions have created a "perfect storm" amid the pandemic in South Florida, Miami's mayor warned Monday.

And local officials are bracing for more spring break mayhem like the kind that occurred over the weekend in Miami Beach when the crowds grew too big and too wild and police cracked down hard, he said.

"There's no doubt that Miami, and the Miami area, and the state are probably one of the most open states in the entire country," Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, a Republican, said on MSNBC. "That's created sort of a perfect storm where you have people that can come to Miami. It's very inexpensive. I've been told some of the flights are $50 and even the hotels are very inexpensive. So, it's been a very difficult mix of inexpensive flights, inexpensive hotels and being known as probably the most open place in the country."

Police officers detain a man Saturday as they enforce an 8 p.m. curfew that authorities imposed on spring break festivities in Miami Beach, Fla.Marco Bello / Reuters

Suarez spoke out a day after city leaders on the other side of Biscayne Bay in Miami Beach voted to extend an 8 p.m. curfew in the South Beach entertainment district to the end of this month and possibly into the middle of April.

"We're obviously preparing ourselves for the possibility that there may be spillover from some of these actions that are taken in Miami Beach with the early curfews and the early shutting down of the causeways of people entering Miami Beach, so we're prepared for that," he said.

Suarez's concerns about a deluge of spring break visitors from afar who are unwilling to wear masks or practice social distancing -- and are not required by local authorities to do so -- have been echoed for weeks by public health experts.

"Any event that involves increased travel and people relaxing preventative measures is a concern," Amber D'Souza, a professor of epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, told NBC News earlier. "This is exactly what we saw after Thanksgiving and after Christmas. ... It's an ongoing cycle and an ongoing concern."

Crowded South Florida has been the epicenter of the pandemic in a state where more than 2 million people have been infected and 33,369 have died of Covid-19, according to the most recent NBC News tally.

People leave the area Sunday as an 8 p.m. curfew goes into effect in Miami Beach, Fla.Joe Raedle / Getty Images

Since February, when the invasion began, the police in Miami Beach have made more than 1,000 arrests — half of them out-of-state residents.

Local police have been stretched to the limit, so Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber has asked for reinforcements from neighboring Dade County communities, as well as the Florida Highway Patrol.

And the crowds that have descended on Miami Beach are different this year, the mayor said.

"I don't see this is a sort of spring break thing, because I don't think these are college kids," he said Sunday. "I think it changes the nature of what we're in front of here. I think there are very few places that have been open as our state has been open."

In Florida, as is the case in most of the country, the daily numbers of Covid-19 cases, deaths and hospitalizations have been declining as more and more people have been getting vaccinated, according to NBC News figures.

But the state leads the nation in variants that are even more contagious, and the Covid-19 test positivity rate has been climbing of late, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican who appears to be positioning himself as former President Donald Trump's heir to the White House, has been harshly criticized for his pandemic performance and has been accused by Democratic rivals and others of using the vaccine distribution to score political points with key constituencies like senior citizens.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis at a news conference at a Navarro Discount Pharmacy in Hialeah on Feb. 23.Wilfredo Lee / AP

DeSantis has defended his decision to not impose mask mandates and to lift restrictions on the economy and has tapped for advice some of the same scientists whom Trump relied on, such as Dr. Scott Atlas and Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, both of Stanford University, The South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported.

Among other things, their hands-off approach to the pandemic, opposition to lockdowns and skepticism about the effectiveness of masks have been denounced by most public health experts.

While the initial rollout of the vaccines was marked by chaos and poor planning, as of Monday about a quarter of the state's population had got at least one shot and 13 percent was fully vaccinated, according to New York Times statistics. That puts Florida (the nation's third most populous state) on par with California (the nation's most populous state) and somewhat behind more than half the other states, although not by much.


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sandy-2021492
Professor Principal
1  sandy-2021492    3 weeks ago

Seems to me that they want spring breakers' money, but not the behavior that goes with spring break.

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
Professor Expert
1.1  FLYNAVY1  replied to  sandy-2021492 @1    3 weeks ago

When there is another wave of covid infections... it will largely be because of self serving assholes like Desantis, and Abbot down in Texas.    

 
 
 
gooseisgone
Senior Quiet
1.1.1  gooseisgone  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @1.1    3 weeks ago
When there is another wave of covid infections..

Are you as concerned with the Covid infections being brought into the country by illegal aliens crossing our southern border?

 
 
 
Paula Bartholomew
PhD Guide
1.1.2  Paula Bartholomew  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @1.1    3 weeks ago

It will mostly be due to the selfish spring break kids.  If I had a kid in college and I knew they were behaving this way, I would no longer cover their education costs.

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
Professor Expert
1.1.3  FLYNAVY1  replied to  gooseisgone @1.1.1    3 weeks ago

More RT propaganda Goose?

Show us the data or go home!

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
1.1.5  Tessylo  replied to  gooseisgone @1.1.4    3 weeks ago

What a bunch of bullshit 'sources'!

 
 
 
gooseisgone
Senior Quiet
1.1.6  gooseisgone  replied to  Tessylo @1.1.5    3 weeks ago
What a bunch of bullshit 'sources'!

So....look it up yourself or you can show me where the Biden Administration has tested 100% of the illegal aliens they have let into the country and they are all negative.  Matter of fact find one website that says that and I'll give you a cookie.  

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
1.1.7  Tessylo  replied to  gooseisgone @1.1.6    3 weeks ago

You didn't show us the data!

I'm not going to do your homework for you.  

 
 
 
MonsterMash
Sophomore Participates
1.1.8  MonsterMash  replied to  Tessylo @1.1.7    3 weeks ago
I'm not going to do your homework for you

 You don't do your own homework

 
 
 
MonsterMash
Sophomore Participates
1.1.9  MonsterMash  replied to  gooseisgone @1.1.4    3 weeks ago
is it time for you to go home yet?

You made him sorry he asked  LOL

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
1.1.10  Tessylo  replied to  MonsterMash @1.1.9    3 weeks ago

No, he didn't.

 
 
 
MonsterMash
Sophomore Participates
1.1.11  MonsterMash  replied to  Tessylo @1.1.5    3 weeks ago
What a bunch of bullshit 'sources'!

As always that's your standard comeback because you can't dispute what was said in the source.

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
1.1.12  Tessylo  replied to  MonsterMash @1.1.11    3 weeks ago

What's to dispute?

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
Professor Expert
1.1.13  FLYNAVY1  replied to  gooseisgone @1.1.4    3 weeks ago

Soooo..... you are all set and ready to compare the few thousands individuals that have a high percentage of being isolated, quarantined, held in confinement as comparison too:

  according to The Transportation Security Administration . On Saturday, a spokesperson for the agency said that TSA had screened about 1.4 million people at airport security checkpoints (in Florid) on Friday, the highest number of passengers since March 15, 2020, when about 1.5 million people were screened,  Insider reported .

Whom are free to roam the streets, and head back to the other 49 states carrying whatever new viral friends they may have contracted.

You ready to take a class in statistics yet Goose?  Better yet... just go home.

 
 
 
gooseisgone
Senior Quiet
1.1.14  gooseisgone  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @1.1.13    3 weeks ago
Soooo..... you are all set and ready to compare the few thousands individuals that have a high percentage of being isolated, quarantined, held in confinement as comparison too:

Soooo.....you want to change the subject. 

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
Professor Expert
1.1.15  FLYNAVY1  replied to  gooseisgone @1.1.14    3 weeks ago

You started this shit in 1.1.1.  And no, I'm nowhere near concerned about potential infections at the Southern Border as I am with what is happening with those on spring break.  

I guess your only possible excuse is that brown people have taken rent free residence up in your head.

 
 
 
bugsy
PhD Guide
1.1.16  bugsy  replied to  gooseisgone @1.1.6    3 weeks ago
look it up yourself

She won;t. Anytime someone tries to wake her up to the facts, she attacks the source and says she never reads them.

For some, staying in the dark is the best way to go.

 
 
 
bugsy
PhD Guide
1.1.17  bugsy  replied to  Tessylo @1.1.12    3 weeks ago

For your reading [entertainment Deleted,] most of these people in Florida are "outside agitators".

This is especially true of the rioters.

 
 
 
gooseisgone
Senior Quiet
1.1.18  gooseisgone  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @1.1.15    3 weeks ago
I am with what is happening with those on spring break

The difference is the Covid at the Southern border is "CONFIRMED", your fear of Covid from spring breakers is "speculation", just as it was on Memorial Day at Lake of the Ozarks, 4th of July, Sturgis, Thanksgiving, Christmas and every Trump rally.  You want Covid to spread so badly at certain events but not when Democrats cause it.  

 
 
 
1stwarrior
Professor Expert
1.2  1stwarrior  replied to  sandy-2021492 @1    3 weeks ago

Daytona is seriously considering cancelling Bike Week.  Sturgis has been advised by the state to reconsider their Bike Week.  Ft. Lauderdale closed/restricted most of the hotels to prevent the high school/college kids.  Hell, even New Orleans put prohibitions up to attempt to reduce the spread.

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
Professor Expert
1.2.1  FLYNAVY1  replied to  1stwarrior @1.2    3 weeks ago

I'm convinced that we will forever be at the mercy of the stupid 1st. 

Yes, you have the constitutional freedom to do these things, but damn it, for once, put the needs of the country first and your wants second.  Maybe I'm just weird 1st.  All Americans are my extended family.  I will sacrifice some things to protect each and every one of them.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
2  JohnRussell    3 weeks ago

I heard an item on the news the other day where it was said that people are going down to party in Florida using their 1400 dollar stimulus to pay their way. 

Maybe there should have been a stipulation attached. If you intend to use this money to take a vacation and possibly spread the virus you are off the list. 

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Participates
3  Sean Treacy    3 weeks ago

These aren’t spring breakers. 

 
 
 
SteevieGee
Junior Silent
3.1  SteevieGee  replied to  Sean Treacy @3    3 weeks ago

So...  What are they then?  Vernal vacationers?

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Junior Principal
4  Nerm_L    3 weeks ago

Democrats succeeded in stimulating the economy.  That free government money is being used as intended.

256


There have already been allegations that the curfew is racist so the crowds gathering in Miami Beach can't be a result of white privilege.  Apparently the race card justifies anything.

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
4.1  Tessylo  replied to  Nerm_L @4    3 weeks ago

So making it up as you go along, as usual.  

 
 
 
bugsy
PhD Guide
4.2  bugsy  replied to  Nerm_L @4    3 weeks ago

From the video that has been shown, there are very few white faces in these riot crowds.

Looks like BLM found a new place to hang out.

 
 
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