TheHill reports New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) warned Monday that the city is serious about keeping swimmers out of the water at its public beaches Memorial Day weekend, even as other locations begin to lift their coronavirus-related restrictions.
“Anyone tries to get in the water, they’ll be taken right out of the water,” he told reporters.
The mayor said that city officials would not put up police barriers at beaches, giving New Yorkers the chance to comply voluntarily. Swimming, lifeguards, parties, barbecues and sports would all be prohibited on the beaches, de Blasio added, and social-distancing rules will still apply.
“It’s a dangerous situation to ever go in the water if there are no lifeguards present,” he added, saying officials are also concerned about scenarios where large numbers of people take the bus or subway to beaches. Only residents of the communities surrounding the beaches would be allowed to use the beach as “just open space you can walk on,” he said.
State beaches in New York, Connecticut, New Jersey and Delaware are all set to be open for Memorial Day weekend.
De Blasio said “[t]he first half of June is the first opportunity to relax anything,” adding that if “we don’t see the right thing, we’ll have to be stricter.”
Per TCO, NY Mayor Bill De Blasio also had a stern warning for establishments and New Yorkers violating social distancing rules.
“We’re not going to tolerate people starting to congregate. It’s as simple as that,” the mayor warned “If we have to shut places down, we will.”
Somewhat ironically, last month Yahoo reported de Blasio was caught walking almost 11 miles from his home in Manhattan at the weekend, whilst encouraging New Yorkers to snitch on neighbours not adhering to stay-at-home measures.
De Blasio was seen strolling through Prospect Park in Brooklyn with his wife, Chirlane McCray, on Saturday afternoon.
That came days after de Blasio closed a new coronavirus hotline that encouraged residents to ‘snitch’ on their neighbours over social distancing when New Yorkers instead sent prank messages to the service.
@NYCMayor no, I won't "give it a break." You don't get a break. We don't get a break.
You can't change the past & will always have blood on your hands.
If I were you, I'd be working night & day to help those in most dire need. Maybe start with your inadequate homeless services. pic.twitter.com/i71ulg7Hvl
— darren (@brooklyn_darren) April 25, 2020