DOH: Updated Sanibel water results

Posted at 8:20 PM, Jul 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-22 08:37:07-04

The Department of Environmental Protection and the Department of Health have just released new results, and they say the waters in Southwest Florida are safe for swimming.

The city of Cape Coral has just reopened Yacht Club beach after the Florida Department of Environmental Protection revealed toxins are no longer in the water. The city initially closed the beach on Sunday after the DEP detected low algae toxins earlier this month.

Bacteria levels have also been an issue at some other popular beaches in Lee County. According to samples earlier this week by the Health Department, high levels of bacteria were found in the waters at Lighthouse Beach.

The Health Department samples the water every week to make sure it's clean and safe for swimming.

This website is updated regularly, and you can search all Florida counties. Not every beach in Florida is tested, but for the 240 beaches that are, you can see a history of the tests for each beach on their website.

While Lighthouse Beach testing showed high levels of fecal pollution on Monday, new tests revealed a different story.  "Their report today reported good levels of the enterococci bacteria at Lighthouse Beach Park," Holly Milbrandt, a marine biologist with the city of Sanibel said.

Four In Your Corner asked Milbrandt how results go from poor to good in just a few days.

"I think the Department of Health would be a great resource I think could provide great information on why the results would be so different over the course of those two days.  But at this time they are not recommending any advisories."

Four in Your Corner reached out to the Department of Health, say that changing tides could have effected the results, as could have many other factors.  They say it's difficult to pinpoint the exact cause of the fluctuations in results.