MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - The signs are placed all along the Horry County coastline read "No Swimming Advised," however, a rep from the Department of Health and Environmental Control says these signs, while permanent, are simply a precaution to beach-goers.
"I just thought it was like a bit of water running in...water run off...just from the hotels or something...not sewage or anything like that." said Jeff Gregory, who is with his family visiting from Canada.
Each sign is posted next to a swash or runoff, where storm water can drain from the city, into the ocean. Jim Beasley with DHEC says these signs were placed in Myrtle Beach back in 2007, and are permanent swimming advisories to warn beach goers of possible bacteria. However, after a closer look, the signs only advise against swimming within 200 feet in both directions, and says that wading, fishing, or collecting seashells, do not pose any risk. Beasley says the signs do not mean the beach is closed, but with tourist season ramping up, some feel that the city should do more to keep the public informed.
"I think when you book a room, the hotel should advise the people. Just let them know what's going on." said Delisha Russell, another tourist visiting from Colombia.
DHEC does tests along the beaches from May to October, and after checking the DHEC records from 2015, none of the Myrtle Beach areas tested ever exceeded the states bacteria standards.
Click here to view a map from DHEC showing the locations of the beach monitoring stations, which will display bacteria levels when testing begins again in May.
Visitors we spoke with say they don't really feel at risk.
"As long as the rest of it's safe, we'll be fine." said Gregory.
Beasley says while the October flood did bring more storm water than we are used to, no additional long term advisories or bans have been put in place.