The Coastal Health District of Georgia serves the counties of Bryan, Camden, Chatham, Effingham, Glynn, Liberty, Long & McIntosh

News & Events


Beach Advisories Lifted on St. Simons Island

Updated November 13, 2019:

The Glynn County Health Department has lifted the bacteria-related beach water advisories for St. Simons Island beaches.

Advisories have been lifted for:

  • East Beach at Old Coast Guard Station (Tenth St. to Driftwood Dr.)
  • Massengale Park Beach (Driftwood Dr. to Cedar St.)
  • Fifth Street Crossover Beach (Cedar St. to Ninth St.)
  • South Beach at the Lighthouse (Ninth St. to the Pier)

Recent water samples show that bacteria levels have dropped below EPA limits, and therefore the advisories have been lifted.


Updated November 6, 2019:

The Glynn County Health Department has lifted the bacteria-related beach water advisories for Jekyll Island at the South Dunes Picnic Area (Corsair Beach Park to South Water Tower) and Middle Beach at the Convention Center (Beach Pavilion to Corsair Beach Park).

The advisories were issued on November 5, 2019 after routine water quality tests showed a high level of enterococci bacteria which increase the risk of gastrointestinal illness in swimmers.

Subsequent water samples showed that the bacteria levels had dropped below Environmental Protection Agency’s recommended limits. Therefore, the advisories have been lifted.

The following Glynn County beaches remain under advisory:

St. Simons Island

  • East Beach at Old Coast Guard Station (Tenth St. to Driftwood Dr.)
  • Massengale Park Beach (Driftwood Dr. to Cedar St.)
  • Fifth Street Crossover Beach (Cedar St. to Ninth St.)
  • South Beach at the Lighthouse (Ninth St. to the Pier)

Meanwhile, a previous beach water advisory for Jekyll Island’s North Beach at Dexter Lane (Tallu Fish Ln. to Brice Ln.) was lifted on Nov. 5 based on results from recent water tests.

graphic showing the beach water advisory signsThe Department of Natural Resources – Coastal Resources Division tests water samples on St. Simons and Jekyll Islands every week throughout the year. The tests screen for enterococcus (pronounced: en·ter·o·coc·cus) bacteria, which are found in humans and some wildlife. The testing program is not related to the capsized motor vehicle carrier in St. Simons Sound.

When a beach is under advisory, it means the level of bacteria found in the water is above the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) recommended standards. This does NOT mean the beach is closed.

These beach water advisories alert the public of a possible risk of illness associated with water contact in the advisory areas. The Health Department recommends you do not swim or wade in the water in the areas under advisory. Fish and other seafood caught from these areas should be thoroughly washed with fresh water and thoroughly cooked before eating, as should fish or seafood caught from any waters.

The areas are being re-tested this week, and the advisories will be lifted when the bacteria levels meet the EPA’s recommended standards.

For more information, including Frequently Asked Questions and Answers, visit our beach water testing page.

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