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Study shows you’ve been swimming in one of the dirtiest beaches in Florida

You’ve read the ongoing (and disturbing) parade of poop advisories warning about harmful bacteria in Miami’s water.

Now a study proves your fears: Crandon Park Beach is one of the dirtiest beaches in Florida.

In a study of water quality across the country, the Environment America Research and Policy Center reports that Crandon Park has the third highest number of potentially unsafe days for swimming in the state.

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The center examined the number of days in 2018 that water had bacteria counts higher than the standards of the Environmental Protection Agency. Crandon Park Beach had 17 potentially unsafe days for swimming of the 63 days it was tested.

The two beaches that were worse than Crandon Park, the study reports: Bayou Texar and Sanders Beach in Escambia County, which had 24 and 23 unsafe days respectively.

Still, things could be worse. Miami-Dade County water wasn’t the most harmful. The counties with the dirtiest beaches are all on Florida’s Gulf Coast: Hernando, Okaloosa, Escambia, Walton and Gulf counties all had higher numbers of potentially unsafe days than South Florida.

Crandon Beach North_SN01
A sign warns swimmers about high bacteria levels at Crandon Beach North. Sam Navarro snavarro@miamiherald.com

Sounds bad, right? It is. But many other states have water that’s way more problematic, including Illinois and Indiana. The study reports that California and Texas have some of the dirtiest water in the country.

Swimming in water that exceeds safety standards can result in gastrointestinal illness, respiratory disease, skin rashes and ear and eye infections. The study reports that swimmers suffer from 57 million cases each year of recreational waterborne illness.

Maybe just go hit the pool instead.

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