Will waterways be the next thing closed because of the coronavirus?


ORANGE BEACH, Ala. (WKRG) — A much different scene Monday than images captured over the weekend of the water surrounding Bird and Robinson Island just north of the Perdido Pass Bridge in Orange Beach.

“I personally thought it was a little too crowded for me,” says Monica Livingston at Boggy Point boat launch scouting a location to launch her boat later this week.

Among the boats anchored off the islands Sunday, “I was out here yesterday,” Jeff Moes. “I think they are making too big of a deal out of it.”

Monday, only a few boats were on state-owned Bird Island and city-owned Robinson Island. The back bays are one of the few places untouched by state health orders involving the coronavirus.

“Currently the waters of Alabama are not closed,” says State Marine Patrol trooper Kenneth Wade, but he says restrictions are still in play. “Social distancing applies to water just as much as it applies to land.”

“I just think we all need to make sure we are respecting each other’s space and if the marine police come by and ask you to move you just move,” Livingston said.

The islands are not covered in Gov. Ivey’s order to close the public and private beaches in Baldwin County, but that could change with more weekends like the last one on waterways around the state.

Orange Beach Mayor Tony Kennon says with the manpower they have available they are enforcing the Governor’s mandates and directives.

Marine police units from the city and state have seen a spike in boat traffic on all waterways since the latest round of closures were announced on Friday.


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