The Department of Health and Environmental Control has placed all beaches in Horry County under a swim advisory until bacteria levels return to normal.
Samples taken today showed all but three stations exceeded the safe swimming standard for bacteria.
A press release attributes the spike to the “excessive amounts” of rainfall that came with Tropical Storm Alberto.
“The absence of signs at any location during the next several days is not an indication that bacteria levels have returned to normal. This is an unusually widespread event that could take several days to clear. The agency has already collected a second round of samples and will continue to collect daily samples until results have returned to normal,” DHEC stated in the release.
Health officials say its still safe to wade, collect shells and fish within the advisory area, but warns that people with open cuts should avoid the water.
To monitor the latest water sampling results, visit this website.