Coronavirus: Complaints rise over lack of social distancing around Oakland's Lake Merritt

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- The warmer it gets and the later it gets into the afternoon hours, the more crowded the area around Oakland's Lake Merritt becomes despite social distancing guidelines during the novel coronavirus pandemic.

The majority of those enjoying the lake appear to not be wearing face coverings.

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Video shot over the weekend shows crowds that are supposed to be moving, not picnicking or sunning.

Over the last six weeks, Alameda County has fielded 2,400 complaints.

"The city of Oakland is leading in the number of complaints where violations are concerned because that's one of the places we got a lot of complaints that people are not social distancing," said Sgt. Tya Modeste with the Alameda County Sheriff's Office. "Those complaints have been forwarded to the Oakland Police department's task force on compliance issues. "

Oakland police say they have issued no citations thus far as they are focused on calls about other criminal activity.

Coronavirus: Social distancing guidelines broken as warm weather brings people to Santa Cruz

Oakland's mayor tweeted out #GiveTheLakeABreak.

Nearby residents are complaining to city council members that they are scared to go out.

"The sidewalks are more narrow than you might find in suburban communities so there's not much social distancing and runners on the sidewalks are often in conflict with families. There's lots of complaints about joggers, the lack of courtesy," said Oakland City Councilmember Lynette Gibson McElhaney.

New signage about social distancing and mask-wearing is expected to go up any day now and McElhaney says there are discussions about possibly curtailing jogging at Lake Merritt.

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