Law enforcement says “no issues” so far with enforcing beach regulations


BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WMBB) — As beaches across the Panhandle reopen for limited access, many are watching closely to see how residents are responding to the guidelines.

After the second day of limited beach access in Bay County, law enforcement officers say, ‘so far, so good.’

“No one wants to ruin it for everybody else,” said Panama City Beach Police Chief, Drew Whitman. “They’re trying to enjoy it and then trying to get off the beach so we can keep it open for everybody.”

The Bay County Sheriff’s Office said on Saturday that so far there have been no issues enforcing the new guidelines on Bay County beaches.

In Panama City Beach, Whitman said the same.

“I think the locals are just trying to keep it quiet so they can enjoy it,” he said. “They don’t want to ruin it for everybody else.”

However, he said PCBPD will do what they have to do to enforce the rules. Those who choose not to follow the guidelines could face a hefty five hundred dollar fine, or even arrest, although no arrests have been made as of Saturday afternoon.

“We don’t want to arrest anybody but we’ll make sure people adhere to the social distancing and they have a good time and they don’t ruin it for anybody else,” said Whitman.

He added that he hopes people continue to do their best to practice social distancing while also enjoying the fresh air.

“We want to make sure people have a release so they can get out and enjoy their time and spend some time with their family and get out of the house a while,” he said.

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