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85 Percent of Texas Beaches Have Unsafe Levels of Fecal Bacteria

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Few things are as shocking and disappointing as hearing that a Texas beach is considered unsafe as a result of increased bacteria levels. However, that’s exactly what’s happening in and around the state as a result of fecal bacteria. In fact, it’s reached unsafe levels on 85 percent of Texas beaches according to a study by Environment Texas.

Over the past two years, Environment Texas has reported that more than 85 percent of Lone Star State beaches have tested positive for levels of fecal bacteria which are deemed to be unsafe. In summary of some of the highest levels, below is a list of a few saltwater spots you should consider steering clear of.

85 Percent of Texas Beaches Have Unsafe Levels of Fecal Bacteria

Photo: Pixabay

According to the study, one of the worst beach for these conditions was Cole Park Site 3 in Corpus Christi. It had levels of fecal bacteria which were unsafe, since out of 64 days that samples were taken, 52 days were called unsafe. In addition, high levels were found at Rope Park and Emerald Beach in the same city.

Galveston Bay came in second on the list, with a number of its beaches found to contain high levels of fecal bacteria over six of its testing days. Likewise, Beach Drive in Freeport experienced high readings for approximately one-eighth of its samples.

85 Percent of Texas Beaches Have Unsafe Levels of Fecal Bacteria

Photo: Wikimedia

With respect to freshwater swimming holes (which are also, unfortunately, not immune to fecal bacteria contamination), 96 of 100 sites which were tested in the Houston area had at least one sample day of unsafe. And that’s just one part of the state! Entitled “Swim at Your Own Risk… Bacteria Pollution in Texas Beaches and Waterways Threatens Public Health,” the full report is available here for review. TexasBeachWatch.com is a great site (brought to you by the Texas General Land Office) for planning and identifying where not to go with respect to bacteria and pollution on Texas beaches. You can check the status of a particular beach by reviewing the color-coded pins which indicate safety levels. A red pin means the fecal bacteria levels were deemed unsafe. Yellow indicates a moderate risk, and green means “go,” that there are miniscule amounts or no contamination whatsoever.