Enforcement of new Kaneohe sandbar alcohol rule begins this weekend

KANEOHE, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Department of Land and Natural Resources will begin the enforcement of a new rule banning alcohol over three day holiday weekends at the Ahu o Laka safety zone, or Kaneohe Sandbar, on Saturday.

According to the DLNR, the rule creates an alcohol-free rectangular zone just over a square mile in area in the middle of Kaneohe Bay that encompasses most of the sandbar. The rule will be enforced on three designated holiday weekends during the summer, including the three-day weekends associated with Memorial Day, Independence Day and Labor Day.

"The state is moving forward to support public safety and respect for Ahu o Laka as a unique natural resource and cultural area," said William J. Aila, Jr., DLNR Chairperson. "We have listened to the concerns of families and responsible boaters in striking a balance that applies needed rules and enforcement to three summer holiday weekends, which have historically been the times when there were larger crowds, drinking and unruly behavior caused more disturbances."

Violations of the new rule may be subject to a civil penalty of between $50 and $1,000 dollars.

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