North Myrtle Beach posts ‘No Swimming’ signs in areas with elevated bacteria levels

NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – Officials are asking beach visitors to pay attention to temporary “No Swimming” signs posted today in North Myrtle Beach to warn people about elevated bacteria levels in the water.

City spokesman Pat Dowling says the signs were posted Thursday at 17th Avenue South, 9th Avenue South, 7th Avenue South, and 3rd Avenue North on the oceanfront and people should not swim within 200 feet on either side of the temporary signs.

The “No Swimming” notices for these specific locations were posted because regularly scheduled ocean water samples taken for the City by Coastal Carolina University’s Environmental Quality Lab on Wednesday and received today showed the elevated presence of enterococci bacteria in the water at these specific locations.

Protocol requires that follow up samples be collected. If the new water samples are found to be within acceptable levels as established by SC DHEC (104 or lower), the public will be notified and the temporary signs will be removed. If the levels are found to not fall within acceptable limits, the signs will remain in place as further testing is accomplished and until the levels fall to within acceptable limits.

The samples taken Wednesday showed 17th Avenue South was at 373, 9th Avenue South at 2110, 7th Avenue South at 703 and 3rd Avenue North at 256.

All other sampling locations were found to be well under the 104 ceiling established by SC DHEC.

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