OCEANSIDE, Calif. (KGTV) - Lifeguards saw a lot more people up and down San Diego's beaches, and with that, a lot more rule breakers.
"It’s definitely the start of summer, we’ve been pretty busy this weekend," Del Mar Lifeguard Chief Jon Edelbrock said.
In Oceanside 10News saw a couple families staked out under umbrellas brought from home, just feet away a man was buried in the sand. All of which is not yet allowed under county orders.
Right now you are allowed to exercise on the beach, walk or jog. In the water people can swim, surf, boat and fish. You cannot have gatherings, play sports or sit on the beach.
Edelbrock said most of the crowd is following the rules, "probably 80% are coming down with good intentions."
That other 20% then has to be contacted by police or lifeguards trying to enforce orders to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
"Their [lifeguards'] primary function is to facilitate safety out in the ocean to watch the water, watch over our kids and make rescues and do first aide and that kind of thing. Daily we’re making 1,000 extra contacts for people not considering the current rule set," Edelbrock said today's water conditions weren't great, making it more important to keep an eye seaward.
In Pacific Beach a neighbor snapped a photo of a woman holding her dog, standing on the closed boardwalk while an officer was writing something. The neighbor said it was a ticket.
Friday law enforcement said they would be out Memorial Day weekned enforcing the eased restrictions.
"It’s doing a disservice for those trying to do the right thing," Edelbrock said it also negatively affects those working to enforce the rules and puts them at risk.
Chris Vanos, chief steward of Teamsters 911, said he's seen fights break out when lifeguards encourage people to follow the rules. He said lifeguards also took a lot of verbal abuse at the beginning of the pandemic and easing of restrictions.
Edelbrock hopes as more people come to the beach this summer that we all do our part to keep everyone safe.
"I don’t want this to turn into a larger public health concern," he said.