With the number of beach closures now up to 12 due to the algae bloom, many residents and visitors are looking for something safe to do.
While some beaches are affected by the blue-green harmful algal bloom, some Coast attractions are doing just fine. Ship Island Excursions Co-Owner Captain Louis Skrmetta said, “Our business is pretty normal. We’re moving into the peak season, late June, coming up on Fourth of July weekend. Business is good and the weather’s been beautiful, so we’ve been having good ridership on the ferries.”
Over 90 riders were on Thursday’s excursion to Ship Island, a good sign that visitors aren’t concerned. “We are getting reports that, although the salinity levels are very low right now, the water is fine. It’s safe for swimming and we are carefully monitoring any changes.”
When the excursion finally lands, most people come over to the south side of the island for a day at the beach. While the algae bloom is running its course at some local beaches, everything is fine on the island. “You can see fish all along the dock as you walk up to the fort. We’re hearing from local fishermen that fishing has been good. The beaches are fine. Right now, people are swimming in our water. We have life-guarded beaches out here, no signs of any problems.”
On Thursday morning, the National Parks Service released a statement confirming that there has been no evidence of algae bloom impacting park islands.