Malibu’s New Year weekend quiet


The last days of 2009 were relatively low-key for the City of Malibu.

Lt. Debra Glafkides, Malibu’s liaison at the Malibu/Lost Hills Sheriff’s Station, on Monday attributed the uneventful New Year’s Eve to a lack of venues in the area equipped to host large New Year’s gatherings, or that stay open late on the last day of the year.

“It’s just the nature of the community,” Glafkides said.

She noted that while there were many calls for assistance inland, the coastal slice of paradise that is Malibu stayed relatively quiet.

New Year’s Eve is typically not a problematic holiday in Malibu, Glafkides, who has been at the Sheriff’s station for four years, said. This year the Sheriff’s station reported one drunk driving arrest and one complaint of a party on Malibu Road, which ended without any problems once units arrived at the scene.

“This level of activity in the city is not unusual for this time of year,” Glafkides said.

The low-key pattern continued at the beach Thursday and Friday. The local Los Angeles County Lifeguard Headquarters reported heavy activity up the coast, but few incidents on local shorelines, recording a total of 12,530 beach-goers Dec. 31 through Jan. 1, and 275 accident or ordinance violation preventions. A reported 150 ordinances, such as drinking or barbecuing, were enforced on the beach.

Among those ordinances, the most commonly enforced is the “no dogs on the beach law,” Ryan Ameche, local lifeguard of eight years, said in a phone interview Monday. This law is currently in effect at all Malibu beaches, Ameche said.

Throughout the state from Dec. 31 to Jan. 3, 1,388 DUI arrests were made and 36 fatalities were reported, compared to last year’s 1,456 DUI arrests and 30 fatalities during the same period, reported CHP Public Information Officer Rick Quintero at press time.