Surfers were back in the water while other recreation-starved residents walked and ran on the sand Wednesday as Los Angeles County beaches reopened for active use only, but parking lots, piers and boardwalks remained off limits.
The county’s beaches had been closed for about two months due to the coronavirus pandemic, and they remained off limits even as the coastline slowly reopened over the past two weeks for active use in Orange County.
Los Angeles County beaches reopened Wednesday morning, also for active uses only. In other words, activities such as sunbathing, sitting on the sand, setting up canopies, picnicking and fishing from the shore all remain off limits, according to the Department of Beaches and Harbors.
Beach parking lots will remain closed, as will the beach bike path and all piers and boardwalks, according to the county.
Beachgoers also must wear masks and maintain a six-foot buffer between themselves and others under continued social-distancing requirements.
The city of Long Beach also opened its beaches with the same restrictions.
“The reopening of our beaches signifies a step towards more opportunities to enjoy our open spaces,” Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia said in a statement. “I know that many in our community have been looking forward to more recreation and I’m urging everyone to continue practicing physical distancing so we can continue moving forward safely.”
Orange County’s beaches are also open under active-use-only restrictions. However, many people were seen in recent days lying on towels and sunbathing in apparent defiance of the requirements. Authorities have said they would try to educate people in violation of the rules instead of issuing citations.
Manhattan Beach Mayor Richard Montgomery urged people to adhere to the rules in Los Angeles County.
“I urge everyone to follow all Public Health Orders for your safety and your neighbors, and please use the beach responsibly by practicing physical distancing,” he said in a statement. “The beach will be open for active uses only, such as walking, running, surfing and swimming. If beach visitors do not follow all the rules, the state of California or Los Angeles County can once again close our beaches. By abiding by these measures, you will play an important role in keeping the beaches open.”
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