Collier County death raises concern over flood water

Posted at 6:25 PM, Sep 18, 2017
and last updated 2017-09-19 07:15:02-04

EVERGLADES CITY, Fla. -- The death of an Everglades City man is causing concern about standing water left behind by Hurricane Irma. 

Storm surge caused flooding in homes and businesses in Everglades City. Many were seen cleaning mud from their homes over the last few days. One family reported over Facebook their loved one, 72-year-old Lee Marteeny, died after coming in contact with potentially contaminated flood waters.

Andrea McKinney at the Collier County Department of health tells Fox 4 as people start storm clean-up, they need to be extra careful walking through standing water. "Any time you have flood water, it can be contaminated with animal or human feces," she said. "If you have to do that, wear protective clothing, whether it be rubber boots or waterproof gloves."

Those with open cuts or sores can be susceptible to infection walking through flood water. McKinney recommends washing the wound with clean water and soap if this happens to you. "Keep an eye on it. If you notice redness or heat to the wound, or see puss or debris in the wound, seek care from a healthcare professional immediately."

Collier County has also put out a precautionary swim advisory at beaches until they are able to test the water. "We haven't been able to test the water and it may not be safe to swim in. We're anticipating being able to test the beaches either Tuesday or Wednesday of this week," McKinney said.

Collier County is working to repair sewage systems, but it still may be a couple of days until they are fully fixed.