Mother of children playing in oil-affected water: Only “when the bait fish are ALL dead, I’m not letting my kids in”


Defying warnings, swimmers still take to oiled Gulf waters, Miami Herald, July 4, 2010:

Pregnant women and young children were urged to avoid the beach, and the public was advised against swimming in general. ...

"The water has been affected by the oil. We know that... If you really want to go into the water, you're welcome to do that.''

Later [the director of the state-run Escambia County Health Department] added: "It's something like the surgeon general's warning against smoking. Guess what? People still smoke."

Waves were more of a worry than oil to Cindy Smith... "The water is fine -- it's a little rough, but it's clean,'' Smith said as two of her three children -- Katlyn, 8, and Makayla, 12 -- dried off from their Gulf swims. Added Smith: "I don't feel greasy." ...

Neon-vested workers prowl the beach with shovels and pool-cleaning nets to scoop up tar balls and oiled sand, while larger machinery plows the beach through the night. ...

Tricia Cash, an aerobics instructor in Olympia, Wash., watched as two of her children -- Sophia, 10, and Nathaniel, 9 -- played waist-deep in the clear surf near the city's fishing pier. She saw the vague health warnings as overblown.

"You know what?" she asked. "If I still see these little fish alive, I'm OK. When the bait fish are all dead, I'm not letting my kids in."

3 comments to Mother of children playing in oil-affected water: Only “when the bait fish are ALL dead, I’m not letting my kids in”

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