Monmouth County, NJ Sheriff implores all to be safe and responsible through Memorial Day weekend
It's shaping up to be a beautiful weather weekend here on Memorial Day weekend with plenty to enjoy outdoors like barbecues, parks, family gatherings, going to the beach, and so on, but being safe and responsible is just as important as having a good time.
There are some beaches that are not yet open due to beach replenishment work being done following some recent storms, but there are also some beaches that are currently open or opening this weekend that don't yet have lifeguards on duty.
In any event, Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden who also oversees the Monmouth County Office of Emergency Management, implores you to consult any lifeguards on duty about conditions and to not swim in unguarded waters.
"We want to be sure that everyone is safe when they visit our beaches. If you are not sure, ask a lifeguard about the conditions, if the lifeguard is not on duty, you shouldn't be swimming," Golden tells Townsquare Media News. "Don't swim on the unguarded beaches, please. We had a number of drownings last year and the year before, we don't want to see swimmers on unguarded beaches and if you are at the beach and you are not sure of the conditions, ask the lifeguards, that's what they're there for, so certainly they're available and they'll be at the ready."
Following the recent massive gathering, pop-up party in Long Branch law enforcement and local officials are ready to go in the event of any such large gathering to ensure that everyone is safe.
"What happened in Long Branch, what was referred to as a pop-up party, can turn unruly quickly. I think what our residents and our tourists and visitors have to have in mind is that they'll be large crowds at the beach, and we welcome all of those crowds to the Jersey Shore but we want them to be safe and we want them to obey the rules and the laws that are in affect," Golden said. "There's a lot of towns that have ordinances -- i.e. no smoking or drinking alcohol on the beach or boardwalk, that would apply to smoking marijuana as well -- all of those are in affect so you have to be aware of the rules in that particular town. We don't want to see those types of flash mob parties that become unruly, but, generally, some of those causes are when alcohol and/or marijuana and heat mix in large crowds -- some type of altercation takes place and then that will just ruin it for everybody."
The same concept applies to any kind of house party as well.
"Moderation is the key, having fun is the key, but adhering to all the state rules and laws -- that will make for a safer environment," Golden said.
With larger crowds on the road and on foot, you'll need to be extra cautious moving around so that there are no incidents.
"We're going to see a lot more pedestrian traffic in our Shore towns as well as bicycle and motorcycle traffic so you need to be really careful when traveling in the motor vehicle and you're driving your car particularly in those Shore towns to look out for the pedestrian, bicycle, and, motorcycle traffic," Golden said. "We've had a lot of incidents in the past years and we want our pedestrians to be safe and our cyclists as well that are enjoying the roadways so share the road and be very aware and cognizant of that kind of traffic in the area."
All across the area, the Monmouth County Sheriff's Office and local law enforcement agencies are ready to go to ensure everyone can have a safe and healthy Memorial Day weekend.
"We have the Monmouth County Sheriff's Office with our partners and all of our law enforcement and our first responders are at the ready for Memorial Day weekend," Golden said. "We are at the ready and as you saw in Long Branch, should we need to act on a particular circumstance, we will, to be sure that the residents and the businesses remain in safe environment throughout the summer."