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Georgia beach threatens $1,000 fines to enforce safety rule

Georgia's largest public beach is threatening to fine visitors up to $1,000 if they disobey warnings to stay off a sandbar blamed for several drownings in recent years

TYBEE ISLAND, Ga. (AP) — Georgia’s largest public beach is threatening to fine visitors up to $1,000 if they disobey warnings to stay off a sandbar blamed for several drownings in recent years.

Tybee Island City Manager Shaw Gillen told news outlets that beach patrol officers have been ordered to start writing tickets.

A long, narrow sandbar that juts into the ocean off the island’s southern shore already has signs warning people to keep away. But Gillen says too many people have been ignoring them.

Rising tides can cause water to rush over the sandbar, sometimes with enough force to sweep people off their feet.

Tybee Island Mayor Shirley Sessions says too many people have died after venturing onto the sandbar.