DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – People packed the beaches in Volusia County on Friday, as it appears to be in its own little bubble for now amid the coronavirus outbreak.
Kineya Taylor celebrated his birthday at the beach because he believes it’s one of the safest and only places to celebrate.
“I live in Kissimmee, they close down Disney World, so this is the only place to go,” Taylor said.
Sheila Denikas planned her family's spring break trip very carefully because her daughter has a compromised immune system and has spent the last 10 years in and out of hospitals.
“I think the beach is totally safe for our family,” Denikas said. “It was probably the scariest time of our life and she goes up and down on this roller coaster of health.”
The family of 13 drove to Daytona Beach rather than taking the risk of flying and Denikas said they're doing everything they can to protect themselves while still enjoying their vacation.
“Whatever it is that’s out here with disease or infection or whatever, is going to be there," she said. "I don’t think that we need to shut down our world for it, we just need to be really careful.
Denikas said the same sanitizing practices recommended by health officials now are normal for her family.
“We need to sanitize her, we need to sanitize all of us,” she said. “We need to live the same practices that we’ve lived every single day with my daughter in the last 10 years of her being sick.”
Denikas picked the beach because she said her children are not interacting too closely with others which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends.
The Volusia County Beach Safety Patrol said the beach is operating under normal practices at this time and lifeguards will continue to work with the county along with the local health department, should anything change.
“Our 11 kids need to have memories with our daughter and we need to have memories as a family,” said Denikas. “It was the best that we could have done for our family because I almost lost her seven times and I can’t live life with our family, living on the what if’s are going to happen. We have to live for everything that is here today.”