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Group To Help Keep Miami Beach Clean For Turtle Nesting Season As New Rules Go Into Effect

MIAMI (CBSMiami) - New rules for spring breakers heading to Miami Beach go into effect Thursday, and one environmental group is gearing up to help keep the beach clean and protect turtles during their nesting season.

Miami Beach pushed for alcohol sales to end at 2 a.m. for most of the month of March, but a local judge said he was unable to enforce that rule; clearing the way for bars to remain open until 5 a.m.

"We stay out until we pass out," said Tom Cruz and Cameron Good, two spring breakers from Michigan.

As thousands of spring breakers are expected to descend on Miami Beach the city's police department is implementing new rules that begin on March 3rd to prevent crowds from getting too rowdy.

Starting Thursday, there's no alcohol, coolers, tents or tables allowed on public beaches. The city will also be enforcing no live or amplified music, as well, as limited vehicular traffic.

March 1st is also the start of turtle nesting season, and days, after a group left a portion of South Pointe on Miami Beach, trashed a local environmental organization is ramping up their beach cleanups to protect the environment and sea turtles.

"Especially since March 1st is the beginning of nesting season for the turtles. So a turtle could come out at any night now to lay their eggs on the beach, so what, they need to do that on the trash?," said Sophie Ringel, the Founder of Clean Miami Beach.

Ringel shared images of the piles of trash that were left on the Beach by a group of high school students on a senior "skip day." Entire plastic trash cans, boxes of canned soda and plastic containers left behind just inches from the shore.

"I was completely shocked. I was angry, frustrated, I was upset. I had all the negative feelings. It was really, really, bad," said Ringel.

Her organization is planning trash pickups on the beach each week during the month of March to help combat any increased littering during the spring break season.

Littering on Miami Beach is illegal, first-time offenders, if caught, will face a $1,500 fine.

EMERGENCY COMPONENT - LOCAL

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