Why do they close beaches in Florida?
UPDATE: Authorities are asking swimmers to avoid the areas of First Street through Fifth Street and the area of Biscayne Bay from South Pointe Drive to 14th Street. There are high levels of bacteria in the area, according to Local 10.
The Florida Department of Health in Miami-Dade County has issued swimming advisories at two popular beaches due to excess fecal matter in their water.
Advisories were posted Friday at Crandon Beach South and Haulover Beach South after water sampled collected there did not meet recreational quality standards for enterococci bacteria.
Visitors to these beaches are advised not to swim at the beaches until further notice.
“The results of the sampling indicate that water contact may pose an increased risk of illness, particularly for susceptible individuals,” the DOH wrote in a statement.
This is the second time in the last two weeks that swimmers have been warned to stay out of the water at Crandon Beach South. On July 18, the health department issued an advisory there and at Crandon Beach North and Golden Beach. About two weeks before that, on July 3, the DOH issued an advisory for waters at Virginia Key Beach Southside (Dog Beach) and Crandon North Beach.
The report looked at the number of potentially unsafe swimming days in 2018 at beaches across the country, defined as days where the water had bacteria counts higher than federal standards.
Of the 63 days for which it was tested in 2018, Crandon Park Beach had 17 potentially unsafe swimming days. That ranked third highest in Florida.
The health department regularly samples water at 16 sites across the county as part of the Florida Healthy Beaches Program. Water samples are tested for enteric bacteria enterococci, which “normally inhabit the intestinal tract of humans and animals, and which may cause human disease, infections, or illness,” according to the statement.