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Sarasota Dept. Health Officials advise of wastewater contamination

Health officials in Sarasota County advse of wastewater contamination in Grand Canal on Siesta Key, possible impacts from wastewater overflow.

The Florida Department of Health in Sarasota County (DOH-Sarasota) today issued a health advisory to residents and visitors near Grand Canal on Siesta Key. Sarasota County Utilities has reported a spill of 36,000 gallons of untreated sewage that has entered Grand Canal near 5200 Oakmont Place. Approximately 14,700 gallons of the released sewage was recovered via pumping.

People in the area are urged to take precautions when in contact with the waters of Grand Canal. Sarasota County Utilities will be conducting water testing in Grand Canal at locations upstream and downstream of the spill location. Water testing will continue until bacteria levels return to normal.

Water contaminated with wastewater overflow presents several health risks to humans. Untreated human sewage with microbes could cause gastrointestinal issues and other conditions.

Anyone who comes into contact with Grand Canal should wash thoroughly, especially before eating or drinking. Children and older adults, as well as people with weakened immune systems, are particularly vulnerable to disease so every precaution should be taken if in contact with the waters of Grand Canal.

For more information about the potential health effects of wastewater overflow, Floridians are encouraged to contact DOH-Sarasota at (941) 861-6133.

For information about DOH-Sarasota, go to