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Coronavirus Impact: Curfews Go Into Effect For Several South Florida Cities

MIAMI (CBSMiami) - The City of Miami has an overnight curfew starting Friday until further notice.

Police Chief Jorge Colina spoke to CBS 4 News on FaceTime.

"Emergency responders. If you work in utilities, if you're a restaurant, (then) you're allowed to stay open but only for delivery, not drive-thru or pickup. If you are Uber, that's okay," he said.

A news release detailed other exceptions like traveling to or from an essential business, medical emergencies, food delivery, and walking the dog. But the dog and its owner cannot go beyond 250 feet from home.

The chief also wanted the public to know that officers will be more about educating than issuing tickets or arresting people.

"I don't want to be in a position where our officers are writing people tickets or arresting people when they might've lost their job, or they're short on hours, or they're struggling at home. Or even if they've been cooped up in the home for a long period of time," the chief said.

Miami's curfew goes from 10 p.m. until 5 a.m. It'll keep happening until further notice.

Homestead is starting its curfew Friday night with the same hours as Miami.

Coral Gables will have its curfew from 11 p.m. until 5 a.m. that's also starting Friday night.

"The idea is obviously, we want to keep people safe. Try to mitigate the spread of the virus. We are going to be warning people (and) educating people. When we stop them, we are going to ask why are you out and about, and for the most part, we will let you go," Miami's police chief said.

Other cities like Miami Beach, North Miami Beach, Key Biscayne, and Sunny Isles Beach have already started overnight curfews.

Keep in mind, the curfews carry more restrictions than the countywide Safer-At-Home orders in Broward and Miami-Dade.

The orders allow people to except side, travel to any essential business, pick up food themselves, and they don't involve much of a challenge from law enforcement.

If you're out during a curfew, on the other hand, you're likely to be stopped and told to go home if you're not an exception.

The chief says if someone doesn't comply, they can be arrested and charged with a second-degree misdemeanor.

If you're not under a curfew, you're still being asked to stay at home just like throughout daylight hours.

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