Spring break curfew on Miami Beach after two men are shot dead

Crowds walk up and down Ocean Drive during spring break (AP)
Crowds walk up and down Ocean Drive during spring break (AP)

A strict curfew has been imposed across Miami Beach in Florida after two fatal shootings as police struggle to control rowdy and chaotic spring break crowds.

Mayor Dan Gelber said in a video message posted on Sunday that the drink-fuelled disorder and presence of numerous firearms “created a peril that cannot go unchecked”.

“We don’t ask for spring break in our city,” added Mr Gelber.

“We don’t want spring break in our city. It’s too rowdy, it’s too much disorder and it’s too difficult to police.”

The curfew is from 11.59pm local time (3.59am GMT) until 6am (10am GMT) on Monday, with additional restrictions likely to be put in place Thursday through next Monday, March 27.

It mainly affects South Beach, the most popular party location for spring breakers.

Two separate shootings this weekend left two people dead.

The latest happened about 3.30am on Sunday along Ocean Drive in South Beach.

A man was shot and died later at a hospital. Officers chased down a suspect on foot, police said on Twitter. Their identities were not released, nor were any possible charges.

College students party during spring break (Getty Images)
College students party during spring break (Getty Images)

On Friday night, a male was killed and another seriously injured, sending crowds scrambling in fear from restaurants and clubs into the streets as gunshots rang out.

Police detained one person at the scene and found four firearms, but no other details have been made available.

Under the curfew, revellers must leave businesses before midnight, although hotels can operate later only in service to their guests.

Restaurants can stay open only for delivery and the curfew won’t apply to residents, people going to and from work, emergency services and hotel guests.

Some roads will be closed off and arriving hotel guests may have to show proof of their reservations.

Last year, the city imposed a midnight curfew following two shootings, also on Ocean Drive.

The year before that, there were about 1,000 arrests and dozens of guns confiscated during a rowdy spring break that led Miami Beach officials to take steps aimed at calming the situation.