Some Kern County residents defying request to stay away from Central Coast this weekend

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PISMO BEACH, Calif. (KGET) — During this holiday weekend, San Luis Obispo County is asking residents from the Central Valley to stay away in the name of safety.

“We have a fairly low incidence rate compared to other counties, so we’re asking people from counties with higher rates to stay away,” said Michelle Shoresman, public information officer for the SLO County Public Health Department. 

The warning is not stopping many from the Golden Empire from hopping on Highway 166. Many residents have already made their way here, including Bakersfield native Josh Vera, who came to enjoy the warm weather and a bowl of clam chowder. 

“We don’t because we just want to have fun,” he said. 

The teen said he doesn’t believe beaches should be closed off to tourists.

“There’s no reason to stop everything you’re doing because of something on the news or the government,” he said. 

That’s a sentiment that Delano resident Frankie Ceja agrees with, saying “no one’s going to stop.”

However, lifelong Pismo Beach resident Thomas Setser says that type of thinking is self-centered.

“We are so close… we don’t need more people coming in, and that’s what we’ve seen on the weekends, carfulls coming in, so, yes, I am definitely concerned,” he said.  

Shoresman said that currently the county has seen an increase in travel to the area since restrictions have been lifted as part of Phase 2. The department said it’s spent thousands of dollars in an attempt to warn travelers to stay home.

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