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Beachgoers advised to avoid swimming in Outer Banks amid high bacteria concerns

Officials cite heavy rains as cause for the warning

Nags Head, North Carolina in Dare County (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Nags Head, North Carolina in Dare County (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images) (Getty Images)

MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. – Vacationers heading to the Outer Banks should stay out of the water due to high bacteria levels, according to officials with the North Carolina Recreational Water Quality Program. 

Heavy rains on Tuesday flooded Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, forcing the town to pump floodwater containing "elevated levels of bacteria" into the ocean, according to state officials. 

“Floodwaters and stormwater runoff can contain pollutants such as waste from septic systems, sewer line breaks, wildlife, petroleum products and other chemicals," said J.D. Potts, manager of the North Carolina Recreational Water Quality Program.

The precautionary swimming advisory is in effect for Dare and Currituck counties, and state officials said that the advisory will be lifted as test results become available.