Reverse evacuation: Residents from high COVID-19 areas flock south to Jersey Shore homes

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Many people from more crowded areas and areas where COVID-19 cases are higher in New Jersey, such as Bergen County, are leaving for their summer homes at the Jersey Shore. 

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As the virus numbers continue to climb in northeast New Jersey, people who are fortunate to own a second house at the shore are making good use of it.

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In Long Beach Island, usually deserted side streets and parking lots outside the ACME supermarket are now filling up with vehicles from all over the tri-state area.

The shelves at the ACME Tuesday were just as bare as the others up north. 

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But for people such as Mike Eustice and his daughter, Riley, who came down from Wayne, they say it's simply about staying safe. 

"A lot of my friends live in Bergen County and there are a lot of cases there, so everyone's quarantined in their house, not allowed to leave so a lot of my friends came down to LBI because they had to leave their quarantine," says Riley, who is an eighth-grade student on home instruction.

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Cape May County Freeholder Director Gerald M. Thornton says, “We are hoping that people act responsibly now so we can minimize the health impacts in as short of a period of time as possible. It would be best if people could stay in their full-time residence for now as we address this current outbreak."

Many of the businesses in LBI are closed for the winter and don't usually reopen until May. The ones which are open are only serving takeout as per Gov. Phil Murphy's order.

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