Swim Advisory Issued for South Jetty Area in Ponce Inlet

UPDATE 10/12/19 at 8 pm: The swim advisory has been lifted.

Beach advisory sign

October 25, 2019 -
The Volusia County Health Department has issued a swim advisory for the south jetty area of the beach in Ponce Inlet. The advisory is a result of recent water sampling conducted as part of the of the Healthy Beaches Program. Advisory signs have been posted. 

This is a precautionary advisory and not a closure. No advisory is in place in New Smyrna Beach.

A swim advisory means that contact with the water may pose an increased risk of infectious disease based upon Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) criteria, and swimming is not recommended at this time. 

This site represents a small section of Volusia County’s coastline. The Healthy Beaches Program monitors 13 sites that span more than 40 miles of Volusia County’s beaches.  Bacteria levels were acceptable at all other sites tested.  The advisory only is for the area listed. The advisory will be lifted when bacteria levels drop.  

Every week, the department analyzes ocean water samples for enterococci bacteria. Enterococci bacteria can be found in the intestinal tract of humans and other animals. Associated bacteria can cause gastrointestinal illness, upper respiratory infections, or skin infections if open wounds or sores exist. 

During recent sampling, bacteria levels at the affected site ranged from 97 to 336 Enterococcus CFU per 100 mL of marine water. 

Established by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, enterococci single sample criteria are: 

Good: 0-35 Enterococci CFU per 100 ml of marine water

Moderate: 36-70 Enterococci CFU per 100 ml of marine water

Poor (unsatisfactory): 71 or greater Enterococci CFU per 100 ml of marine water

Additional ocean water samples were tested Thursday. Results are expected late today. If those results are at acceptable levels, the advisory will be lifted. 

Beach advisories are not uncommon at this time of the year. While the cause of the increased levels for this advisory is unknown, possible causes include migratory birds in the area and currents and swells that affect how swiftly the ocean water is moving near the shoreline.

 

A historical list of sampling results for Volusia County is online.

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2019 International Coastal Cleanup in Volusia County

Coastal-cleanup

Volusia County has 47 miles of beach along the Atlantic Ocean. Each year, the International Coastal Cleanup is held around the world, with millions of volunteers putting in time do beach cleanups. There are several locations you can go to in order to officially participate in the International Coastal Cleanup in Volusia County (although you can always do a beach clean up anytime and anywhere on your own). The clean up is scheduled for September 21, 2019.

There is a list of locations that are being coordinated by the county, and a couple that are being organized by others. Whether you put in 30 minutes or an hour, collectively it will all help the ocean to be cleaner. This is a great family friendly activity.

You can get more information on registering for the county cleanup locations here. You can get more information to register with other locations here.

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