CAMERON COUNTY, Texas (KVEO) — With rising COVID-19 cases and deaths, county leaders are counting on residents to help them combat the virus.
A video posted online of people partying on a boat in South Padre Island has gained thousands of shares and comments, for all the wrong reasons.
It was a weekend of bliss for party goers aboard the Murphy’s Law Boat in South Padre Island.
“The virus doesn’t care. Do you? Do you care? That video upset me to the core over the weekend,” said Cameron County judge Eddie Treviño Jr.
The video was posted on Clayton’s Beach Bar and Grill Facebook page. It was shared over 2,000 times and over a thousand comments, mainly negative.
“We closed down the beaches in Cameron County, the county beaches, because we’re trying to avoid the congregation of individuals. It’s not that we don’t want people to enjoy our beaches. It’s not that we don’t want people to enjoy the sun. It’s not that we don’t want people to go outside. We are in the midst of a worldwide pandemic,” said the county judge.
There are over 20,000 valley residents that tested positive for the virus, that number climbs every day.
Operations manager of Captain Murphy’s Isla Tours Lisa Graves said they did not receive any federal funding to stay open, the pandemic continues to hurt their business.
“We had to draw into our savings to pay our employees. It was tough, we almost had to close our doors because we couldn’t survive and now, we have to survive. Our employees have to survive and we’re just trying to do the best we can,” she said.
Graves said there were less than 70 people on the boat, they kept hand sanitizer on the boat and required everyone who enters the boat to wear a mask.
However, in the video many are seen not wearing a mask.
“We’re not the police we can’t enforce people once they get on the boat to leave them on,” she said.
During the pandemic, Captain Murphy’s wants to continue to operate to make money. Graves said they want to offer an escape for people who have been dealing with the pandemic.
“It’s people’s choice to go to Walmart, to go to Ross. It’s their choice to get on a boat. You know they’ve been on lockdown and we’re here to accommodate them. We do it in the guidelines that have been outlined to us,” she said.
She adds there are no plans for the company to stop hosting events on the boat.
They say they will continue to follow all guidelines outlined by the CDC and county leaders.