Daytona Beach bridges closed for hours Saturday over concerns from large crowds

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Access to one of Central Florida’s hotspots this Memorial Day weekend was denied for several hours after police were forced to close the bridges leading to Daytona Beach.

Police said they had to shut down traffic to the beachside and clear out the crowds during one of the busiest times of the year.

All three of the bridges in the city were closed eastbound for a few hours in the afternoon.

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Police said they wanted to keep things from getting out of control as a proactive measure to stop some of the craziness and violence the city saw last year.

It was jam-packed on the bridge in the area as people once partying at the beach headed home.

Police cited public safety concerns for the closures with a mass of people flooding the beach.

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Last year, crowds shut down roadways and went wild during an “Orlando Invades Daytona” event.

People reported seeing fights, cars doing burnouts, two people were shot and four others were hit by debris.

Some residents in the area said they could not get back home or head to their jobs while the bridges were closed.

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Saturday was predicted to be the busiest day for the beaches this Memorial Day weekend. It’s unclear if the bridges to Daytona Beach will be closed Sunday if the large crowds continue to flood the city.

See the full report in the video above.

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Jeff Deal, WFTV.com

I joined the Eyewitness News team as a reporter in 2006.