Code Enforcement tickets two for disobeying double red flags
Panama City Beach Code Enforcement officers ticketed two swimmers today who refused to get out of the water on double red flags. Each was fined $500.
Double red flags mean there are dangerous rip currents present. Ordinance 1494, approved by the Panama City Beach City Council on August 8, 2019, provides for civil penalties for failure to obey a lawful order when told to get out of the Gulf of Mexico during double red flags.
Both individuals were swimming in the eastern end of the beach and warned by Code Enforcement Officers to get out of the water. Both complied, but later returned to the water. One of the individuals was behind Pineapple Willy's and the other was behind Boardwalk Beach Resort. Those cited included a female from Georgia, approximately 30 years old, and a male from Panama City Beach, approximately 40 years old.
Mayor Mark Sheldon said the City will continue enforcing the ordinance. "Public safety is first and foremost to all of us on Panama City Beach. We have stated numerous times that is it not wise to go into the water during double red flags because it puts everybody in jeopardy. We will not continue to stand for these selfish acts."
The ordinance does not apply to persons attached by a leash to a surfboard. A surfboard means a fiberglass, epoxy, closed-cell neoprene or closed cell Styrofoam instrument with one or more fins or skegs attached to or inserted through the bottom, including windsurf boards and sailboards, but does not include rubber rafts, floats, belly boards, skim boards, or boogie boards.
To see the ordinance, click here.
Public Information Officer Debbie Ward can be reached at email@example.com.