Cape Coral Yacht Club beach tests high for bacteria

Kim Londono and her family flew to Southwest Florida from New York to enjoy the sand, water and beautiful weather at the Cape Cora Yacht Club.

All was going well until Wednesday night. Londono’s son started to break out.

“We didn’t notice it until this morning,” Londono said. “But we were out last night and we just stayed until almost after the sunset and so came home and then this morning, noticed he had redness around his shoulders and just itching, itching. He’s still itching a little bit.”

London learned Thursday morning the Florida Department of Health in Lee County posted “no swimming” signs. An advisory was made to the public to not enter the water at the Cape Coral Yacht Club due to high levels of bacteria identified in routine testing.

Specifically, the beach park is located at 5819 Driftwood Pkwy in Cape Coral.

The release said tests completed April 18, indicate that the water quality at the Cape Coral Yacht Club does not meet the safety criteria for Enterococcus bacteria recommended by the Florida Dept. of Health.

Contact with water may pose an increased risk of disease, particularly for susceptible individuals. It is recommended not to wade or swim at the Cape Coral Yacht Club, according to the Florida Dept. of Health press release.

Enterococcus bacteria usually inhabit the intestinal tract of humans and animals. The presence of an elevated concentration of these bacteria is an indicator of pollution, which may come from stormwater runoff, pets, wildlife or sewage.

Elevated levels of Enterococcus bacteria have been associated with an increased risk of swimming-associated gastroenteritis illness such as diarrhea and abdominal pain.

The Florida Department of Health in Lee County says this advisory will continue until bacteria levels are below the accepted health level. New test results should be available for the Cape Coral Yacht Club on Tuesday afternoon, April 23.

For visitors traveling from distant parts of the world, the lengthy advisory is frustrating.

Nick Egtenschwiler, who along with his family is visiting from Switzerland, said they made the trip to swim in the water.

“It’s disappointing,” Egtenschwiler said. “We came here to go to the beach and the kid is already screaming in the car. Like, ‘I want to go to the water, I want to swim, I want to dive,’ and stuff like that.

“Then we came here and we saw the signs,” Egtenschwiler said. “Now, we had to go to the playground.”

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