Saturday May 15 was officially designated as “Healthy Beaches Awareness Day” in South Carolina by Gov. Mark Sanford. What it really means is the start of beach monitoring at the state’s 23 beaches by the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control.
DHEC, funded by a grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, will look out for public health problems on the beaches. It is also their job to inform the public if there is any risk of exposure to disease-causing microorganisms in the waters at the beaches.
Other tips from DHEC to keep beaches healthy include not swimming in washes or near storm water pipes which are areas likely to have higher levels of bacteria. Officials also recommend not swimming in the ocean during, or immediately after a heavy rain.