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Spring Break booze ban scrapped as revellers prepare to party on after shootings

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Spring breakers can once again party and binge drink to their hearts content as the officials have scrapped the midnight curfew and booze ban.

The ban on alcohol sales after 6pm and the midnight party closures were first implemented after five people were shot in Miami's South Beach entertainment district last week.

The streets were also filled with more law enforcement officers.

However, Miami Beach City Manager Alina Hudak has claimed that the increase in police presence will remain in place until Sunday (April 3) when the college half term ends.

Authorities claimed that these temporary measures would only be lifted when the area had returned to "peace, party, and calm" following a pair of shootings on March 20 and 21 which sent five people to the hospital.

Panicked partiers ran for cover, causing property damage and disrupting traffic and the mayhem caused four police officers to be injured as people fled the area following the second attack.

Officials said about 100 guns had been seized over the past four weeks with 37 in just the last three days, according to Sky News.

Speaking to the same news outlet, witness Lo Mills said: “We heard the shots, they ran across the street, and see them fall and I pulled out my gun to see what was going on.”

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Last Monday, Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber announced the emergency measures at a press conference, as he said: “We didn’t ask for spring break and we don’t want it.

“We just simply cannot have people come to our city and have to worry about being shot. That’s not a way a city can operate.”

Following the implemented measures, photos were taken at the beach show students waiting in long queues outside of Park Central Hotel on Ocean Drive to order their final drinks of the night.

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Liquor stores and supermarkets in the area were banned from selling alcohol from 6pm to 6am between Thursday, March 24 and March 28.

Reports over the weekend said that the festivities seem to be under control as a result of the measures taken.

The annual college students’ party draws as many as 600,000 young people to Florida from all over the US.

In recent years a 32-bed mobile hospital has been set up near the beach to treat revellers who have overdone it with the festivities and the Spring Break traditions of drinking, drug abuse and fighting.

Residents, who have previously welcomed the tourism revenue and party atmosphere, have grown weary at the scenes of violence and creation of no-go areas.

Last year, a curfew led to the closure of traffic causeways connecting Miami Beach to the mainland.

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Online community forums are full of complaints from locals about feeling “unsafe” and that those bringing trouble to their city do not represent the bulk of law-abiding visitors who are there simply for a good time, the Times reports.

One local described the atmosphere in the city as “like a zoo on steroids”.

Jason Morgan told wrote: “By midnight it’s a zoo on steroids so closing off the roadways after 95 per cent of the crowd has arrived will only accomplish one thing: mass traffic."

  • Students
  • Police
  • Alcohol

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