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No-swim advisory issued on barrier islands

Lido Key, Longboat Key and Siesta Key are all under a no-swim advisory after tests showed elevated bacteria levels — a phenomenon associated with Hurricane Michael.

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  • | 4:26 p.m. October 10, 2018
  • Longboat Key
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County health officials have issued a no-swim advisory on Lido Key, Siesta Key and Longboat Key.

The Florida Department of Health in Sarasota County announced a no-swim advisory for 13 beaches today after tests showed elevated levels of enterococcus bacteria. Affected areas include Longboat Key, Lido Beach, Siesta Key Beach and Turtle Beach.

Officials said Hurricane Michael is contributing to the higher bacteria levels. The storm causes high surf and rip currents along the shore, which sends waves onto the land and exposes water to naturally present bacteria in the sand and soil.

The beaches remain open, but officials encourage visitors not to engage in water recreation. The enterococcus bacteria can cause illnesses, infections and rashes, according to a Florida Department of Health release.

A no-swim advisory is not in place at Bird Key Park.

Additional quality tests will not be done until the water levels lower and there is a lower risk for rip currents.


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