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BREAKING NEWS: Palm Beach lifts no-swimming advisory for Midtown Beach

The Town of Palm Beach has removed a no-swimming advisory for Midtown Beach after water samples taken there on Wednesday tested in the satisfactory range for bacterial contamination.

The town announced the no-swimming advisory was lifted, effective immediately, in an email notice shortly after 3 p.m.

Joe Sekula, assistant fire-rescue chief and public information officer for the Palm Beach Fire-Rescue Department, said the town had been notified by the Florida Department of Health in Palm Beach County that the water samples taken Wednesday tested below 10 parts per 100 milliliters of marine water for Enterococci bacteria. He said that is in the normal range.

“The water quality is now at safe levels and the swimming advisory for Midtown Beach has been lifted,” the town said in the email notice.

The Department of Health issued a water-quality health alert for Midtown Beach and DuBois Park in Jupiter on Tuesday after water samples taken on Monday revealed unsafe levels of fecal contamination in the water. The Health Department said it considered the levels at both locations a health risk for water activities, including swimming.

At Midtown Beach, samples taken during regular water quality monitoring revealed a high level of Enterococci bacteria, which is an indication of fecal pollution, which may come from stormwater runoff, pets and wildlife, and human sewage.

The water samples collected on Monday showed that Midtown Beach tested around 175 per 100 milliliters of marine water for Enterococci bacteria, Sekula said. DuBois Park tested at 97.
Any level above 71 is considered poor, Sekula said. Midtown Beach usually tests around 10.

The Florida Department of Health in Palm Beach County has conducted saltwater quality sampling since August 2002 as part of the Florida Healthy Beaches Monitoring Program.

For more information, log onto the town’s website, townofpalmbeach.com, where you can sign up to receive town email alerts, or contact Sekula at (561) 227-6435.

For more information on the Florida Healthy Beaches Monitoring program, contact the Florida Department of Health in Palm Beach County at (561) 274-3187 or (561) 837-5988, or visit the Health Department’s beach water quality website HERE.

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