Toxic algae growth forces closure of all coastal Mississippi beaches

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BILOXI, La. (WVUE) - All coastal Mississippi beaches are closed to swimmers.

The announcement comes as toxic algae was found in two Pascagoula beaches.

The Mississippi Dept. of Environmental Quality says toxic blue-green harmful algal bloom expanded into two additional areas.

These two closures, on top of the other 19, means all coastal beaches in Mississippi are off-limits to swimmers.

Contact with the algae can cause rashes, stomach cramps, nausea, diarrhea and vomiting.

Officials believe the growth is due to freshwater coming from the Bonnet Carre Spillway.

The closure is isolated to the water. The sand is open, but officials say they can only recommend people not swim and it could be difficult to enforce.

Signs are posted around the beach with orange flags alerting people of the closure.

There’s no word on when the beaches will reopen, but DEQ says they will continue testing sampling.

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