Today, officials with the The Florida Department of Health in Hillsborough County issued a no swim advisory for Cypress Point Beach in Tampa due to high levels of enterococci bacteria, which is an indication of fecal pollution, or as we call it "poop water."
“Samples taken Wednesday were above threshold for enterococci bacteria,” says the advisory. “The beach will be re-sampled, Wednesday, February 5, 2020.”
Enterococcus bacteria is usually found in human and animal feces, and is often present in high volumes due to stormwater runoff, pet droppings, and human sewage spills. Exposure to enterococci bacteria can cause a variety of infections, rashes, fever, and more.
But this isn’t the first time Cypress Point Beach, which is just north of the Howard Franklin Bridge, has tested for high levels of enterococci. The same beach had a similar advisory issued just a month ago on Dec. 30, and again on Dec. 23.
Since we're talking about sewage spills, it’s also worth mentioning that mandatory state records show that on Jan. 29, 1,600 gallons of raw sewage were spilled into the Hillsborough River due to a blockage in a gravity sewer.
You can check the status of local beaches here.