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City Urges Public To Follow Health Precautions During Memorial Day Weekend

People sit at tables at the Beach House Grill Thursday, May 21, 2020, in San ...

Photo by Gregory Bull / AP Photo

Above: People sit at tables at the Beach House Grill Thursday, May 21, 2020, in San Diego.

San Diego city leaders are urging residents to continue obeying orders regarding COVID-19 precautions during the Memorial Day weekend amid concerns of violations by businesses and the public.

San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer said that Thursday, the county's first day back to in-person dining and in-store retail was largely a success, though one Pacific Beach restaurant and bar made headlines when videos and pictures shared over social media showed large groups of patrons standing in close quarters without masks.

The restaurant, El Prez, was shut down Friday by county officials as a result. San Diego County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher said the restaurant would "remain closed until further notice" for violations of the public health order.

Faulconer issued a warning to business owners, saying "The same thing will happen to any businesses that operate with a flagrant disregard for the safety of others."

As the weekend began, San Diego Police Chief David Nisleit said water access and running or jogging along the shoreline will be allowed, but reminded the public that stopping, sitting or lying down at the beaches is still prohibited, while boardwalks and parking lots remain closed.

San Diego police and lifeguards are stepping up enforcement of the public health orders this weekend, both at beaches and businesses that have reopened since San Diego entered the latter part of Phase 2.

Nisleit said a "very robust grouping of law enforcement" will patrol day and night, while San Diego Fire-Rescue Department Lifeguard Chief James Gartland said "full lifeguard staffing" will be on hand to enforce compliance of the health orders at the beaches.

"Let's support local workers and restaurants not only by giving them our business, but by following public health rules that keep all of us safe," Faulconer said.

"We've all worked so hard, so let's enjoy our progress but not give up the gains we've made. Whether you're on the sand or at a shop this weekend, stay classy out there San Diego."

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