MIAMI, Fla. – Miami-Dade’s Mayor Carlos Gimenez said the county is preparing to re-open after the month-long shutdown because of coronavirus, but it isn’t ready yet.
Local leaders agree that reopening too quickly could have dire consequences.
"We can't go early with this thing. The rush to do it would be devastating," said Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber.
Gelber issued words of warning on Sunday speaking to the number of people who have been calling for South Florida to reopen.
And to those who are ready to speed things back to normal, Gelber says it could extend the problem.
"Imagine thousands of people dying in our community because we just decided we had to go back. We just got tired of it and we wanted to go out to the beach? It just can't happen."
Gelber said they are looking at opening marinas, golf courses and parks to give people access to more places where they can exercise at a safe distance.
At Sunday’s briefing,
See Miami-Dade County mayor’s update below
Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez has also hinted that similar openings could be coming county-wide.
But Gimenez said it all needs to be done with caution. In fact, the county has enlisted security guards who will help ensure social distancing is maintained when open spaces begin to reopen.
About 400 people who have worked security and done other similar jobs at Hard Rock Stadium and the American Airlines Arena will be making sure that rules are followed.
"These folks have not been able to work because all of those facilities are closed."
According to Gimenez, U.S. Coast Guard, Miami-Dade Police and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Committee will be patrolling the waterways to make sure boaters are following proper social distancing rules.
Those that ignore the rules once parks do open can face arrest and a $500 fine.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, during a Sunday briefing in Orlando, briefly mentioned his vision for the state’s reopening. “It’s not turning on a light switch and suddenly we’re back to Feb. 1. It’s just not the way it’s gonna work.”
He emphasized safety, saying: "We’re going to do everything in a very smart, methodical, and safe way. I’m less concerned about a specific date than I am about getting it right.”