MIAMI (WSVN) - City of Miami commissioners have passed an ordinance approving fines for those caught not wearing masks in public.

City leaders approved passage of the emergency ordinance Thursday evening in an effort to help stop the spread of COVID-19, as new cases continue to rise across South Florida.

Starting Friday, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez said, people caught in a public space without a face mask could face fines.

“If they fail to wear masks in public, they’re going to get a warning. The second time they’ll be fined $50, the third time they’ll be fined $150 and could be fined up to $500,” he said.

“How hard is it to wear a mask? It’s not hard,” said Miami resident Jazzy.

The ordinance is the latest example of the toll that the COVID-19 surge has taken in the region.

A month after reopening, Apple announced all of its stores in the Sunshine State will remain closed until further notice.

Local Apple customers reacted to the news on Thursday.

“They should do what they have to do to protect their staff and everyone else around,” said Keenan Sealy.

“This is a real pandemic, and if Apple is going to make moves, we should probably take notice,” said Chuck Handy.

Meanwhile, Miami-Dade courts have ended all in-person access with few exceptions, becoming the first government agency to roll back reopening.

Independence Day will also look a lot different. Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez is asking cities to scrap celebrations that draw large crowds, including those featuring firework displays.

“We don’t want any big gatherings. We really, if you want to have a firework show that people can be outside their home and watch it, that’s fine, but we don’t want places where people are going to be getting together,” he said.

The mayor’s announcement comes as statistics show hospitals in Florida’s hardest hit areas are gradually filling up, with about 25% of intensive care unit beds still available.

Gimenez said there is still plenty of room.

“We still have over 450 ICU beds available, with the ability to put another 400 in operation really quickly,” he said.

Memorial Healthcare System has set up tents all week preparing for a possible influx of COVID-19 patients.

Following an announcement earlier this week, Broward businesses are bracing for a county crackdown.

The owners of Olympia Flame Diner in Deerfield Beach said they’re going above and beyond to make sure everything is above board.

Thanks to an executive order that goes into effect Friday, any business that breaks the rules could be closed down for 24 hours and face a serious fine.

“Our staff, we do temperature checks every morning to make sure that we are screening properly,” said Patty Miranda, the restaurant’s co-owner. “We’re asking the proper questions, requiring masks, requiring gloves, requiring masks for our customers when they come in and when they’re exiting and then when they are walking about the building.”

Suarez will be out handing out masks in the neighborhood near Marlins Park, located in one of the county’s COVID-19 hotspots, Friday morning.

Anyone with questions and concerns about the coronavirus can call the Florida Department of Health’s 24-hour hotline at 1-866-779-6121.

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