Water Quality Status Indicators
Indicates that, based on the most recent test, water quality is acceptable. Enterococci levels were at or below the EPA threshold of 104 colonies per 100 milliliters of water.
Indicates the most recent test results for a given site exceeded the EPA threshold of 104 Enterococci colonies per 100 milliliters of water. There may be an increased risk of illness associated with swimming in such water. Because elevated bacteria levels are often transient and usually fall quickly, these sites undergo immediate retesting. The yellow status will be revised to red or green based on the results of the retest.
Indicates that repeat testing of a site has again revealed bacteria levels over the EPA threshold of 104 Enterococci colonies per 100 milliliters of water. There may be an increased risk of illness associated with swimming in such water. Because elevated bacteria levels have persisted, a public health advisory has been issued.
View the current advisory status and all recent testing results posted by the ADEM/ADPH Coastal Alabama Beach Monitoring Program for the following Gulf Shores locations:
- Gulf Shores Public Beach
- Gulf State Park Pavilion Beach
- Little Lagoon Pass
- Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge Beach
For more information or questions regarding the monitoring program, contact the Alabama Department of Environmental Management at 251-304-1176 or the Alabama Department of Public Health at 251-947-3618.
Red tide results from a massive build-up of certain species of microscopic sea organisms known as dinoflagellates. These organisms produce a toxin that affects the central nervous system of fish so they are paralyzed and cannot breathe. At high concentrations, the organisms may produce a discoloration of the water. Red tides are often referred to as “blooms.” The species (Karenia brevis), isolated from waters along the Gulf Coast, may produce toxins that cause skin irritation and respiratory problems in humans.
Health Department officials advise:
- Avoid the area if you are susceptible to respiratory problems such as asthma or emphysema.
- Leave the water if you experience skin irritations while swimming or boating and rinse immediately with fresh water.
- If you experience nose, throat or eye irritation when exposed to the gulf mist, avoid the mist.
- Do not eat fish from the red tide-affected area that are lethargic, swim in circles or appear unhealthy.