Daytona Beach, Fla. — 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 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 the 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 on 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.
About the Florida Department of Health
The department, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.