Dirtiest Beaches in US – Is Yours on the List?

When you think of the beach, you most likely picture white sand and clear water. But as we know, that’s not always the case. While clear water is not easy to come by in many beaches in the United States, there’s also many beaches out there that are just simply dangerous. A new report released Tuesday lists the most bacteria infested beaches in 29 coastal and Great Lakes states. The study looked at the number of days in 2018 that the water had bacteria counts exceeding Environmental Protection Agency standards. The Environment America Research and Policy Center report says the high counts can sicken an estimated 75,000 swimmers a year.

Dirtiest Beaches

Tanner Park – Suffolk, NY

Most days of the year, beaches are considered safe. But sometimes bacteria counts can spike with fecal matter from people or animals as the chief culprit. It comes when sewers overflow or when fecal waste on streets washes into streams or creeks that flow to lakes or the ocean.

“It’s hard to believe that 47 years after we passed the Clean Water Act that we are still concerned with poop in the water when people want to go swimming,” said John Rumpler, clean water program director for the center.

In Chicago for example, 19 of 19 beaches sampled had at least one day last year when beaches were considered potentially unsafe for swimming. One, South Shore Beach, showed contamination on 93 of the 98 days in which samples were taken. Tanner Park in New York’s Suffolk County registered high on 48 out of 71 samples. None of the NYC beaches made the list though.

Here are the worst five beaches by state, ranked by most unsafe days as per the report:

Alabama

• Fairhope Public Beach, Baldwin (21 unsafe days, 60 samples)

• Dog River, Alba Club, Mobile (9, 36)

• Camp Beckwith, Baldwin (8, 58)

• Volanta Avenue, Baldwin (8, 36)

• Orange Street Pier, Baldwin (6, 34)

California

• Inner Cabrillo Beach, Los Angeles (85 unsafe days, 175 samples)

• Coronado Ave. Beach, Los Angeles (62, 144)

• Salt Creek Beach, Orange (46, 80)

• Molino Avenue Beach, Los Angeles (45, 130)

• 5th Place Beach, Los Angeles (44, 140)

Connecticut

• Byram Beach (South), Fairfield (6 unsafe days, 20 samples)

• Byram Beach (North), Fairfield (6, 20)

• Seaside Park Beach (Southernmost), Fairfield (5, 14)

• Seaside Park Beach (South), Fairfield (4, 13)

• Seaside Park Beach (Mid), Fairfield (4, 14)

Delaware

• Slaughter Beach, Sussex (16 unsafe days, 25 samples)

• Fenwick Island State Park Beach, Sussex (3, 16)

• Rehoboth Beach, Sussex (3, 32)

• Broadkill Beach, Sussex (2, 16)

• Lewes Beach North, Sussex (2, 17)

Florida

• Bayou Texar, Escambia (24 unsafe days, 50 samples)

• Sanders Beach, Escambia (23, 64)

• Crandon Park on Key Biscayne, Miami-Dade (17, 63)

• Bird Key Park, Sarasota (17, 67)

• Venice Fishing Pier, Sarasota (15, 64)

Georgia

• St. Simons Island Lighthouse, Glynn (6 unsafe days, 50 samples)

• Skidaway Narrows, Chatham (3, 8)

• Kings Ferry, Chatham (3, 4)

• Tybee Island, Polk St., Chatham (3, 46)

• Jekyll Driftwood Beach, Glynn (2, 46)

Hawaii

• Keehi Lagoon (North), Honolulu (11 unsafe days, 91 samples)

• Keehi Lagoon (South), Honolulu (10, 91)

• Punaluu Beach Park, Honolulu (9, 12)

• MS2 (Kapoho Point), Honolulu (9, 20)

• Kalihi Channel, Honolulu (8, 91)

Illinois

• South Shore Beach, Cook (93 unsafe days, 98 samples)

• 63rd Street Beach, Cook (91, 95)

• Foster Avenue Beach, Cook (90, 96)

• Calumet South Beach, Cook (89, 96)

• Rogers Avenue Park Beach, Cook (89, 95)

Indiana

• Jeorse Park Beach I, Lake (40 unsafe days, 111 samples)

• Jeorse Park Beach II, Lake (38, 111)

• Buffington Harbor Beach, Lake (28, 111)

• Indiana Dunes State Park East Beach, Porter (23, 101)

• Washington Park Beach, LaPorte (22, 105)

Louisiana

• North Beach    Calcasieu                   11    31

• Cypremort Point State Park    St. Mary     10    31

• Fontainebleau State Park    St. Tammany     10    29

• Rutherford Beach    Cameron             9    31

• Holly Beach – 4            Cameron                    7    31

Maine

• Goose Rocks Beach – Site 5    York        14    39

• Goose Rocks Beach – Site 1    York        9    39

• Willard Beach    Cumberland                  8    26

• Ogunquit Beach    York                         7    14

• Kennebunk Beach    York                         6    18

Maryland

• Camp Pecometh    Kent                        9    16

• Public Landing Beach near Snow Hill  Worcester     8    15

• Ocean City Beach 1    Worcester           8    28

• Purse State Park    Charles             7    12

• Ferry Park    Kent                        7    10

Massachusetts

• Nahant Bay at Eastern Ave    Essex        39    92

• Tenean Beach    Suffolk                      26    94

• Nahant Bay at Pierce Road    Essex        23    92

• Nahant Bay at Kimball Road    Essex        21    92

• Quincy Shore at Channing Street    Norfolk      18    93

Michigan

• St. Clair Shores Memorial Park Beach  Macomb     26    49

• Pier Park    Wayne                        15    20

• HCMA/Lake St. Clair Metropark Beach   Macomb     13    51

• New Baltimore Park Beach    Macomb       12    48

• Singing Bridge Beach    Arenac              11    11

Minnesota

• New Duluth Boat Club landing     St. Louis     16    37

• Near Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge    St. Louis     10    29

• Agate Bay                    Lake              5    17

• Twin Points Public Access    Lake         4    16

• Flood Bay                    Lake         3    14

Mississippi

• Gulfport East Beach    Harrison            44    66

• Shearwater Beach    Jackson              35    64

• Long Beach             Harrison            35    67

• Gulfport Central Beach    Harrison            35    62

• Courthouse Road Beach    Harrison                34    60

New Hampshire

• State Beach-Left    Rockingham           5    26

• State Beach-Center    Rockingham           5    27

• New Castle Island-Right    Rockingham           4    23

• State Beach-Right    Rockingham           3    26

• Sawyer Beach-Right    Rockingham           2    8

New Jersey

• Berkeley Township/Beachwood Beach West    Ocean     14    22

• Belmar Borough at L Street Beach   Monmouth     11    21

• Berkeley Township at West Beach Avon Rd    Ocean     8    19

• Brick Township at Windward Beach    Ocean     8    22

• Highlands Borough at Highlands Rec Ctr Monmouth 8    19

New York

• Tanner Park                    Suffolk         48    71

• Woodlawn Beach State Park    Erie             47    104

• Shirley Beach                    Suffolk         28    47

• Venetian Shores              Suffolk           28    48

• Valley Grove Beach            Suffolk     24    51

North Carolina

• Sound access at the intersection of

E. Main St./Tooley St., Belhaven Beaufort    11    35

• NC Maritime Museum Sailing Camp     Carteret    8    41

• Pamlico River- City Park    Beaufort     8    17

• End of Shore Line Dr.            Pender       7    39

• Pamlico River-Washington-Trestle  Beaufort     7    17

Ohio

• Bay View West    Erie                        48    70

• Maumee Bay State Park (Inland)    Lucas        43    56

• Villa Angela State Park    Cuyahoga            42    115

• Lakeview Beach            Lorain                     39    60

• Euclid State Park    Cuyahoga            38    112

Oregon

• Sunset Bay State Park Beach/Big Creek    Coos     11    18

• Nye Beach turnaround/discharge pipe    Lincoln    5    11

• Harris Beach State Park at Harris Creek    Curry     5    7

• Sunset Bay, Seep Creek               Coos      5    11

• Sunset Bay State Park Beach/North Beach    Coos     4    18

Pennsylvania

• Beach 11 West in Thompson Bay    Erie            17    39

• Beach 11 East in Thompson Bay    Erie         17    39

• Beach 11 Center in Thompson Bay    Erie         16    39

• Barracks Beach West            Erie               9    31

• Barracks Beach East            Erie        7    31

Rhode Island

• Easton’s Beach                    Newport            10    29

• Conimicut Point Beach -West    Kent         6    25

• Goddard Memorial State Park-Center    Kent     5    27

• Sandy Point Beach -South    Newport     5    26

• Oakland Beach -Center            Kent        5    26

South Carolina

• Withers Swash                      Horry     32    70

• Myrtle Beach at 24th Ave. N      Horry     30    70

• White Point Swash              Horry     26    70

• Bear Branch Swash              Horry     26    70

• Cane Patch Swash              Horry     26    70

Texas

• Cole Park – Site 3             Nueces     52    64

• Ropes Park – Site 2             Nueces     43    59

• Cole Park – Site 4             Nueces     42    53

• Cole Park – Site 2             Nueces     38    56

• Poenisch Park                     Nueces     35    55

Virginia

• North Community Beach             Norfolk city    7    18

• Captains Quarters             Norfolk city    5    18

• 10th View, Behind Quality Inn,   Norfolk city    4    18

• 15th Street                Virginia Beach city    4    20

• 13th View, North End             Norfolk city    3    18

Washington

• Sooes Beach                    Clallam            7    41

• Lummi Bay, adjacent to 2nd tidegate    Whatcom    5    34

• Dakwas Park Beach, Neah Bay    Clallam     5    48

• Little Squalicum Park            Whatcom         5    15

•Cline Spit County Park            Clallam     4    15

Wisconsin

• Cupertino Park                    Milwaukee       40    60

• McKinley Marina Roundhouse    Milwaukee    36    61

• Wolfenbuttel Park            Kenosha     27    51

• North Nicolet Bay Campground    Door        18    59

• Racine North Beach – Site 1    Racine      18    65

HT: Environment America Research and Policy Center

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.