Tampa Bay area residents took to the streets to celebrate the Buccaneers’ 31-9 win over the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV on Sunday night, and mayor Jane Castor isn’t happy about it.
Castor slammed fans who gathered to celebrate after the game, as most of them did so without masks and didn’t adhere to basic social distancing guidelines set in place to help protect them amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It is a little frustrating because we have worked so hard in cooperation with the NFL and the county and just a number of different entities, putting the executive order in place that masks had to be worn in specific areas that we knew groups would be congregating,” Castor said Monday, via ESPN.
Bucs fans celebrate mostly maskless in Tampa
It’s easy to see why Bucs fans rushed the streets to celebrate on Sunday night.
Their team just won its second-ever Super Bowl, and did so in its home stadium — the first in the league to ever accomplish that feat.
Yet when videos surfaced of them doing so throughout the city, many — if not most — were seen not wearing masks or adhering to social distancing guidelines.
— Yahoo Sports (@YahooSports) February 8, 2021
Fans have flooded Howard Avenue in Soho. Had a mask on while shooting this video. This is right outside Mac Dinton’s and Saloon. Police have closed a portion of the road as fans continue to celebrate the Bucs win. @FOX13News pic.twitter.com/tX7kCgPIpd
— Jordan Bowen FOX 13 (@JordanBowenFOX) February 8, 2021
The country is averaging nearly 120,000 new cases of the coronavirus each day, according to The New York Times, and more than 2,800 deaths attributed to it. Florida, which has repeatedly ignored or failed to implement basic safety measures throughout the pandemic, has had more than 1.78 million confirmed cases — the third-most in the country.
While NFL commissioner Roger Goodell praised Castor and the city for their “extraordinary effort” in hosting what they felt was a safe Super Bowl, fans’ actions after the game could result in significant spikes in cases and deaths in the coming weeks — something Castor is extremely worried about.
“At this point, in dealing with COVID-19, there is a level of frustration when you see that,” Castor, the city’s former police chief, said, via ESPN. “It can be passed on to those individuals who are least likely to recover safely from it.”
Super Bowl LV from Yahoo Sports: