Wednesday, April 24th 2019, 12:19 pm - Heading to the beach? BEWARE. Strange things can happen on sandy shores.
5. SUNBATHING WOMAN RUN OVER BY POLICE CAR
A Los Angeles woman was allegedly injured by a police car while sunbathing at Venice Beach on Easter Sunday, local media reports.
She was taken to the hospital with "non-life-threatening" injuries.
According to KTLA, a similar incident occurred on the same beach in September 2017, involving a different sunbather and police cruiser.
4. TEEN CONTRACTS DEVASTATING HOOKWORM INFECTION WHILE PLAYING ON THE BEACH
In July 2018, a mother from Memphis, Tennessee posted a graphic warning on Facebook about the dangers of going barefoot at the beach.
Kelli Mulhollen Dumas shared photos of her son Michael's foot after he was infected with hookworm parasites at Pompano Beach.
Mulhollen Dumas says the ordeal was a "nightmare" for the whole family.
Four people in their group contracted the infection but Michael's was the worst. A round of treatment cost $1356 and consisted of 6 pills.
Mulhollen Dumas contacted Pompano Beach Health officials who told her that "everyone knows to wear shoes on the beach because you can get parasites."
“I assured them everyone does NOT KNOW THAT,” Mulhollen Dumas wrote on Facebook.
Safety precautions you can take: People living in warm and moist climates where there are poor sanitation practices are at risk of hookworm infection, the Center for Disease Control writes on its website.
Infection occurs when skin makes contact with soil that is contaminated by the feces of an infected individual. Wear protective footwear and try to avoid contact with sand in areas where sanitation practices are unclear.
3. WOMAN IMPALED BY BEACH UMBRELLA
A 67-year-old woman visiting the Jersey Shore from London, UK was impaled by a beach umbrella in July 2018.
Margaret Reynolds' ankle was pierced after a strong gust of wind tossed the umbrella through the air.
A fire crew had to use a bolt cutter to free her. She then transported to the hospital in an ambulance.
"It was a beautiful day and a gust of wind blew the umbrella. It was just an accident," Reynolds said in a statement released by Hackensack Meridian Health.
This isn't the first (or worst) time a beach-goer has been injured this way.
In 2016, Lottie Michelle Belk, of Chester, Virginia died when a wind-tossed umbrella hit her in the torso and sent her into cardiac arrest.
Safety precautions you can take: "My primary advice is this: If it's windy, take down the umbrella. Never leave an umbrella unattended," Ed Quigley told Vice. Quigley lost his eye when he was hit by a flying beach umbrella in 2015. Since then, he's established a blog aimed at preventing future beach umbrella disasters. Tips can be found here.
2. CONFIRMED FLESH-EATING BACTERIA ON VIRGINIA BEACHES
Health officials issued several warnings about the presence of the flesh-eating bacteria Vibrio parahaemolyticus on Virginia beaches in the summer of 2018. At least one person died and nine were infected.
Warmer seawater temperatures in the summer tend to cause an uptick in cases.
Vibrio parahaemolyticus is typically found in fishermen but can infect anyone who goes into the water with a wound. Officials say beach-goers should be cautious of rocks.
"You should still enjoy the beach, but that's one of the reasons the lifeguards are blowing their whistles around the rocks," Nancy Lemis, an epidemiologist for the Virginia Department of Health, told USA Today.
Safety precautions you can take: People with open wounds or compromised immune systems shouldn't swim in salt or brackish water. On land, infections can occur from eating raw or undercooked seafood -- especially shellfish. If you discover a wound after visiting the beach, wash the area thoroughly with soap and water. If you start to develop flu-like symptoms shortly after visiting the beach, seek immediate medical care.
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1. THREE-YEAR-OLD HOSPITALIZED WITH BACTERIAL INFECTIONS CONTRACTED AT FLORIDA BEACH
A South Florida mother took to Facebook to warn others about the sores and blisters that her 3-year-old daughter developed after spending a day at a beach in Miami-Dade County in 2018.
"They said that there's been a lot of cases from Key Biscayne that are coming in with infections. A lot of kids," Anais Monteagudo told WPTV last summer.
"My daughter got two different bacteria infections just by being in the beach for not even 2 hours," she added on Facebook.
Safety precautions you can take: Avoid going into the water when no swimming advisories are in place. Try to avoid swallowing or inhaling beach water and wear shoes on the beach and avoid going in the water if you have a wound. Unfortunately, sometimes infection or illness can occur even when implementing best practices.