Surfing and COVID-19
I had a chance to talk with Al Ramadan yesterday afternoon and as many of you know, the parking lots along West Cliff are posted to closure starting tomorrow to limit access. Some people are not getting the message regarding social distancing and the transmission of this virus. I feel it is imperative, as does Al, that we talk to our surfers and surfing community. The closure of the lots is the first step and then second may be to limit access to our surfing beaches. I don’t know the decision points on closing our surfing beaches and I would imagine the authorities are cognizant of the issues. Many other beaches to our south are either closed already or parking lots restricted.
As a personal observation, I have seen some of our club and team surfers, some with their parents present, not practicing social distancing. We all need to heed the warnings and practice perfect discipline. Although I am trying to shelter in place, when I am out, I will approach club members who are not exhibiting the behaviors we are all mandated to perform and I expect all of the Board of Directors of SCLU to perform in this same manner. This may feel over bearing but we need to get a handle on this virus and it would be really good if our club members (wearing logoed merchandise!) are respectful of the governors mandates. If you have children of any age, please take a few minutes to discuss this and know where they are and who they are hanging out with.
To slow the spread or stop this virus, we must be cautious. This is not a joke or a hoax. My first career was in health care and although not a primary first responder or medical personnel, I know the path some of our surfing community is on may not end well. We need to be mindful and watch out for others and speak up. If you see our surfers behaving badly, say something. Do not encourage them as they are sitting on the cliffs taking pictures or congregating at the top of the stairs or along the railings unless you are at least 6 ft away. Please do not form into groups of 4 or more. Encourage everyone to practice diligently all the other infectious disease precautions that have been identified by local authorities.
This article from the National Surfrider Foundation is a start. There are things we do not know and what we know is we need to participate as if lives depend on this….and they do! Please join me in helping our community by modeling behaviors and holding ourselves accountable and responsible. Please take a few minutes to read this with your family, friends or neighbors.