Home City Of Deerfield Beach BEACH ADVISORY: Possible Bacteria Detected in Seaweed

BEACH ADVISORY: Possible Bacteria Detected in Seaweed

Possible Bacteria Detected in Seaweed
For several months the City of Deerfield Beach has been tracking a massive 5,000-mile-long patch of Sargassum (seaweed) headed for the Florida coast. As the seaweed gets closer to our shores, the City wants residents and visitors to be aware that there could be harmful bacteria in the seaweed bloom.
A recent study conducted by Florida Atlantic University found Sargassum that ends up on beaches tends to harbor high levels of Vibrio bacteria. Infection with vibriosis can cause a range of symptoms such as diarrhea, stomach cramps, vomiting, fever, chills, ear infections and wound infections. Brief exposure isn’t enough to make people sick, but prolonged exposure — especially for those with respiratory issues — can be dangerous, scientists say.
The City of Deerfield Beach’s Coastal Management division is tracking the impending seaweed bloom. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Sargassum originates when concentrations of nitrogen and phosphorus get dumped into the ocean from rivers from human activity such as agriculture and fossil fuel production.
The City continues to rake its beach daily to minimize the accumulation of sargassum. To be proactive for the expected biomass, City staff has been in contact with emergency debris management contractors who can assist in the event the Governor issues an emergency declaration and releases funds for approved debris removal operations. This would enable officials to contract with vendors to expedite the removal of the seaweed. Please keep in mind that this is not a problem exclusive to Deerfield Beach. All cities in our region are monitoring this issue as well. We apologize for any inconvenience this naturally occurring algal bloom may cause and ask for your patience as we work to make sure Deerfield Beach remains a safe place for its residents and visitors.
For more information and frequently asked questions, check out the following links:
For updates on this evolving issue stay tuned to regular posts on the City’s Instagram and Facebook platforms, or check out News and Announcements at www.dfb.city.