Avoid playing in flood water after South Florida downpours


MIAMI – What may look like the silver lining to this week's rain deluge across South Florida can actually be hazardous to your health.

The floodwaters left behind the downpours are enticing to play in, but health officials warn parents against allowing their children to make contact with the water.

Hazardous bacteria can reside in the water and those with open cuts and wounds can become severely infected by the contaminated water.

Raw sewage often ends up in flood waters and can contain urine, feces and whatever anyone has flushed down the toilet.

And if children are playing on flooded streets, remember those roadways are covered in vehicle fluids such as oil and gas. Plus, decaying animals may get mixed up in the water.

GoHealthUC.com warns if you or someone you know has been exposed to floodwater and exhibits any symptoms including headache, fever, diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, urinary discomfort or have a wound or scrape that touched contaminated water, you should seek medical help right away

Murky flood waters also hide broken glass or other dangerous items on the street.

Here's a list of health risks associated with floodwater:

  • Cryptosporidiosis
  • Enteroviruses
  • E. coli
  • Giardiasis
  • Hepatitis B and C
  • Leptospirosis
  • Legionnaires’ disease
  • Norovirus
  • Rotavirus
  • Shigellosis