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Health Advisory for Bacterial Levels: Walton Rocks Beach

By Arlease Hall

August 12, 2016

Florida Department of Health in St. Lucie County is issuing a swimming advisory at Walton Rocks Beach on South Hutchinson Island after testing revealed higher than normal levels of enteric bacteria. Potential health risks for those who ingest or come in contact with the water include upset stomach, diarrhea, eye irritation and skin rashes.

Enteric bacteria inhabit the intestinal tract of humans and animals and their presence in recreational waters is an indication of fecal pollution.  Their presence may come from storm water runoff, pets, wildlife and human sewage. Poor results are posted as an “Advisory” at the affected beaches and those beaches are re-sampled the following week.

Florida Department of Health in St. Lucie County has notified the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) of the results and will continue to perform additional testing in this area until results are satisfactory.  The most recent sample was collected August 11, 2016. Follow up sampling is scheduled for Monday August 15, 2016.

Florida Department of Health in St. Lucie County, Environmental Health Division, has been conducting saltwater beach water quality monitoring since July 2000, through the Healthy Beaches Monitoring Program. The Health Department monitors 6 sites, every other week. The water samples are analyzed for enterococci bacteria.

For results of all St. Lucie County beaches sampled, visit the Florida Department of Health in St. Lucie County website at click on Environmental Health, then select Health Beaches Program, then select Florida Healthy Beaches Website.

For more information, please contact St. Lucie’s Environmental Health Division at 772-873-4931.