Marinelli Beach, adjacent to the East Chop Beach Club, was closed due to high bacteria counts Tuesday. Oak Bluffs health agent Shirley Fauteaux posted signs at 9 am, Tuesday morning advising beachgoers that the water is unsafe for swimming.
A water sample taken Monday showed Enterococci counts of 624 colony forming units per 100 milliliters, exceeding the standard of 104 or less, according to results posted on the state’s Bureau of Environmental Health website. Under state regulations, bathing areas are closed if samples taken on two consecutive days show high bacteria counts.
Enterococci are a group of bacterial species within the Streptococcus genus, some of which are typically found in human and animal waste.
Swimming in polluted water can cause symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain, sore throat, cough, runny nose, and sneezing, earache, eye irritation and itchiness, skin rash and itching, and flu-like symptoms such as fever and chills.