Heading To The Beach? You Might Be Too Late

D'Ann Lawrence White

PINELLAS COUNTY, FL — At noon Saturday, the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office reported that many of the beaches and beach accesses are already at capacity and have been closed.

During a news conference Friday, Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri predicted that the county's 35 miles of beaches would fill quickly over the Memorial Day weekend. He urged beach goers to check the sheriff's Beach Capacity Dashboard to see which beaches are still open before heading out.

More than 300 law enforcement officers are working beach duty this Memorial Day weekend at beach access points, beaches, beach parking lots, bridges and causeways to ensure the beaches don't become overcrowded and beach goers maintain social distancing and group limits due to the coronavirus.

The beach capacity dashboard will be updated every half hour.

As of noon Saturday, closures and near capacities were announced at:

  • 48th Avenue County Park Dolphin Village Park, St. Pete Beach
  • Redington Shores County Park beach access and parking lot
  • Madeira Beach county beach access, Archibald Park parking and Archibald Park beach access
  • Madeira Beach 129th Avenue parking
  • Indian Shores Tiki Gardens parking and beach
  • Indian Shores Park Boulevard boat ramp
  • Indian Rocks Beach county beach access, county beach access parking and the 27th Avenue beach access
  • Indian Rocks Beach 4th, 18th and 15th avenue beach access
  • Gandy Beach
  • Fort De Soto North Beach and North Beach Parking
  • Fort De Soto Dog Park
  • Fort DeSoto Dog Beach and Dog Beach parking
  • Fort DeSoto boat ramp
  • Clearwater Seminole Boat Docks parking
  • Clearwater Sand Key Park beach and beach parking
  • Clearwater Sand Key Bayside Park
  • Courtney Campbell Causeway Recreation Area
  • Dunedin Beach Causeway Beach is at 75 percent capacity
  • Honeymoon Island State Park is at 75 percent capacity
  • Indian Rocks Beach 5th, 6th, 8th, 10th and 12th avenue beach accesses are at 60 to 65 percent capacity
  • Indian Rocks Beach 23rd and 25th avenues beach access are at 70 percent capacity
  • Madeira Beach 129th and 130th avenues beach access are at 80 percent capacity.

See related story: Sheriff Says To Expect 'Crazy Beach Weekend' With Capacity Crowds

This article originally appeared on the Clearwater Patch