Sarasota County Issues "Health Alert" over Red Tide Now Present on Beaches
7-1-21 .... Red Tide at elevated levels have been detected at several Sarasota County beaches.
The Florida Department of Health in Sarasota County (DOH-Sarasota) will be posting signage at several beaches to advise the public.
Sarasota County Health officials are recommending that people who are sensitive to red tide or experiencing symptoms avoid the beach, If you have symptoms do not subside, contact your health care provider for evaluation.
Some people may have mild and short-lived respiratory symptoms such as eye, nose, and throat irritation like those associated with the common cold or seasonal sinus allergies. Some individuals with existing breathing problems such as asthma might experience more severe effects. Usually symptoms go away when a person leaves the beach or goes indoors.
The beaches with elevated levels of red tide include Nokomis Beach, North Jetty, Venice Beach, Service Club, Venice Fishing Pier, Brohard Park, Caspersen, Manasota Key, and Blind Pass.
DOH-Sarasota makes the following recommendations:
- Do not swim around dead fish.
- If you have chronic respiratory problems, consider staying away from the beach as red tide can affect your breathing.
- Do not harvest or eat molluscan shellfish and distressed or dead fish. If fish are healthy, rinse fillets with tap or bottled water and throw out the guts.
- Keep pets and livestock away from water, sea foam, and dead sea life.
- Residents living in beach areas who experience respiratory symptoms are advised to close windows and run the air conditioner (making sure that the A/C filter is maintained according to manufacturer’s specifications).
- If outdoors, residents may choose to wear paper filter masks, especially if onshore winds are blowing.
Florida Poison Control Centers have a toll-free 24/7 Hotline for reporting of illnesses, including health effects from exposure to red tide at 1-888-232-8635.