Officers enforce alcohol ban on Volusia beaches during spring break

By Saul Saenz, Reporter
Last Updated: Sunday, March 19, 2017

Most entrances to Volusia County beaches have a sign showing alcohol is not allowed on any of the county’s beaches.

  • Officers enforcing alcohol ban on Volusia beaches
  • Spring breaks given choice: pour out liquor or get a citation
  • Signs put up on beaches warning of alcohol ordinance

Spring breakers are learning Beach Safety and Ocean rescue officers are enforcing that law.

Captain Andrew Ethridge said lifeguards have been cracking down on spring breakers drinking on the beach by giving students a choice, pour the liquor out, or get a citation.

“It does seem that having them pour it out hurts them worse than a ticket. I don’t think they understand the ramifications of later in life.” said Captain Ethridge, adding there are pockets of the beach where spring breaks congregate.

Lifeguards or officers frequent those areas to keep an eye on the spring breakers and let them know about the ordinance.

Derek Mendoli, 22, and fellow spring breakers, received one of those visits.

They were asked to pour out the liquor they purchased.

Mendoli admitted to taking liquor to the beach, but was unaware about a sign directly behind him showing liquor is banned from Volusia beaches.

“Thats upsetting,” said Mendoli. “We’re allowed to have fun.”

Captain Ethridge said officers have been dealing with this almost every day since spring breakers started arriving two weeks ago.

He said students have already been arrested for not complying with the law.

Other Florida counties passed similar ordinances banning alcohol from beaches to try to keep spring breakers from getting out of control.

Captain Ethridge said officers are not trying to stop students from having fun, just trying keep them safe.

Ethridge said a citation for taking alcohol to the beach is a $50.

It’s an additional $50 if the alcohol is in a glass container.

And underage students are slapped with a $288 fine.