San Onofre State Park, has had enough of careless smokers who dispose of their butts on the beach.
Coinciding with World No Tobacco Day Wednesday, a team of 30 plain-clothed rangers were prowling San Onofre surfing beach as part of an anti-smoking and litter crackdown.
Nicknamed by local media as "Butt Busters" and the "Butt Force," the rangers have been issuing fines of $45 for smokers who dump their butts on the beach instead of in designated bins.
The fine jumps to $200 for smokers who dump lit cigarettes.
Sheriff Bob, chief of the" Butt Buster" squad, said 45 smokers had been fined in the past week for indiscriminate cigarette littering.
He said more than 5,000 butts were discarded daily on the beach in 2005, many of which find their way into the lineup with the surfers.
"The new hardline approach, which we do not apologize for, is designed to reduce thousands of cigarette butts that are littered across the beach every day to the detriment of our wonderful waterways,"Sheriff Bob said in a statement.
Officials estimate that about one million butts were discarded inappropriately at San Onofre in 2005.
Some of those caught in the act were taking the fines on the chin, local media said.
"It's a dirty, rotten habit and I should've put it in the bin," the Sun Post newspaper quoted one unidentified puffer as saying.
May the Butt Force be with you.