It's March 1, so while college students prepare for Spring Break, law enforcement in Panama City Beach is preparing, too.
Today marks the day that Spring Break laws go into effect in the panhandle destination. These are ordinances passed by PCB City Council or Bay County Commission that aim to curb irresponsible or dangerous behavior by the massive influx of party minded young adults.
There are nine ordinances that target Spring Breakers this year (sometimes the totals change). The big one, of course, is that absolutely no alcohol is allowed on the beach.
The PCB Chamber of Commerce notes that some ordinances are only in effect from March 1-31, while others last all year. The Panama City News Herald provided a list of all the 2018 ordinances:
1. No possession or consumption of alcoholic beverages on the sandy beach during the month of March.
2. No possession or consumption of alcohol in commercial parking lots.
3. All alcohol sales end at 2 a.m. through the month of March.
4. No open house parties.
5. Parking in a closed business parking lot is prohibited.
6. Overnight scooter rental is not permitted.
7. It is illegal to climb, jump from or throw things from balconies.
8. Parking is prohibited on unmarked or unpaved portions of the road after dark.
9. Metal shovels are not permitted on the beach, and any holes dug in the sand should not be deeper than 2 feet.
The paper noted that the Bay County Sheriff's Office and the PCB Police Department arrested 168 people for beachside drinking in March 2017 (48 of them were underage). The incidents were largely resolved with a $200 fine and "a 90-day agreement to not break the law."