The return of President Donald Trump to his Palm Beach Mar-A-Lago resort Thursday afternoon for the Easter holiday prompted the U.S. Coast Guard to set “security zones” for the Intracoastal Waterway and the Atlantic Ocean off the Palm Beach sands. The zones will be enforced until Monday afternoon.
“The security zones are necessary to protect the VIP and accompanying official party, the public, and the surrounding waterway from terrorist acts, sabotage or other subversive acts, accidents, or other causes of a similar nature,” the Coast Guard release said. “Entering, stopping, or anchoring in this security zone is prohibited unless authorized by the Captain of the Port Miami or a designated representative.”
The security zones are broken down thusly: Zone 1 is the middle zone. No boats or people will be allowed in this zone, which is bordered by Lake Worth Lagoon from the southern end of Everglades Island on the north side; to 1,000 yards south of the Southern Boulevard Bridge on the south side; and the eastern shore line west of Fisherman Island. Those needing authorization to go through this zone have to contact the Coast Guard via VHF-FM Channel 16 on marine band radio.
Zone 2 is the westernmost zone. Boats going through this zone have to maintain speed, no slowing down, from Lake Worth Lagoon down to over 1,000 yards south of the bridge and from the western shore to the western edge of Fisherman Island. Boats who need to wait for the Southern Boulevard Bridge can do so, but only until the bridge raises.
Never miss a local story.
Zone 3 is the Atlantic Ocean. Boats going through this zone must move at a steady speed as they move through a trapezoid bordered by Banyan Road on the north; Ocean View Road on the south; the beach on the west; and 1,800 yards east in the north expanding gradually to 2,000 yards east in the south.
Violation of a security zone can be penalized by a civil fine over $88,000 and/or a criminal sentence of up to 12 years in jail and $10,000 fine.
Since becoming president, Trump has spent six times at Mar-A-Lago, including recently hosting Chinese President Xi Jinping there.