Shores in Laguna Beach will be closed on the Fourth of July in an effort to curb spread of the novel coronavirus, officials said Tuesday.
The city council voted Tuesday evening to close beaches on July 4th, with the option to extend to July 5th, Laguna Beach Police Department Sgt. Jim Cota told KTLA.
The annual fireworks display was also canceled as a safety measure due to the pandemic, the city said.
“Please remember that all fireworks, even ‘safe and sane’ fireworks like sparklers, are illegal in Laguna Beach,” the city said in a tweet.
Nearby Newport Beach will keep its city beaches open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. but will not allow professional fireworks displays, street parades or festivals, in alignment with state guidance that restricts large gatherings, the city said in a written statement.
The city also said its police department will maintain a strong presence on the beaches, manage traffic flow and proactively enforce a ban on illegal fireworks over the July 4th weekend.
Laguna Beach’s announcement comes as Orange County was added to a watch list of 19 counties in California that are being closely monitors over rising COVID-19 cases.
A total of 779 new coronavirus cases and 10 new deaths were reported in the county Tuesday — a large increase from Monday’s 456 new cases.
Laguna Beach reopened its beaches in early May, after Gov. Gavin Newsom issued an order on April 30 closing all beaches in Orange County following a weekend of crowded shores that raised concerns the region was not heeding stay-at-home orders.