Florida 2011 Swimming Season Update
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- 2011 Summary Results
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- Print Version (PDF) (2 pp, 1MB, About PDF) of this document
- Raw data (XLS) (243K) for Florida
The Beaches Environmental Assessment and Coastal Health (BEACH) Act of 2000 authorizes EPA to provide grants to coastal and Great Lakes states, territories, and eligible tribes to monitor their coastal beaches for bacteria that indicate the possible presence of disease-causing pathogens and to notify the public when there is a potential risk to public health. The BEACH Act requires that recipients of those grants report their coastal beach monitoring and notification data to EPA. This fact sheet highlights the data submitted to EPA by the State of Florida for the 2011 swimming season.
|County||Total Beaches||Monitored||Not Monitored|
2011 Summary Results
Florida monitored 275 coastal beaches in 34 counties during the 2011 swimming season (Figure 1 and Table 1). When monitoring results at swimming beaches show that levels of specific indicator bacteria in the water exceed applicable water quality standards, Florida officials issue a beach advisory, warning people of possible risks of swimming.
How many beaches had notification actions?
In 2011, of the 275 monitored coastal beaches that Florida monitored, 92 (33 percent) had at least one notification action (Figure 2). This is approximately the same as in previous years.
How many notification actions were issued and how long did they last?
Florida issued 215 notification actions during the 2011 swimming season. Typically Florida lifts an action when follow-up monitoring indicates that water quality complies with applicable standards. For the majority of actions (65 percent) water quality returned to normal and beaches were deemed safe for swimming within a week or less (Figure 3).
What percentage of days were beaches under a notification action?
EPA calculates the total available beach days and the number of beach days with notification actions to better track trends over time. Total available beach days are determined by multiplying the length of the beach season by the number of beaches in the state. For 2011 EPA calculated that 100,740 beach days were associated with the swimming seasons of the 275 monitored Florida beaches. Florida reported notification actions on 2,632 days, meaning that beaches were open and safe for swimming about 97 percent of the time. This continues the trend of consistently high percentages of open beach days at state beaches (Figure 4).