BEACHWOOD — An Ocean County beach is closed and two others are under advisories due to increased levels of bacteria during testing of the water.

The testing showed spikes in the level of Enterococci bacteria at the three beaches, none of which face the ocean.

Beachwood Beach West in Beachwood on the Toms River was closed on Wednesday after testing at a level for a second consecutive day that exceeds the state standard of 104 colonies of Enterococci bacteria per 100 milliliters of sample. The closure will remain in effect until subsequent sampling indicates bacteria levels are again below the standard.

The beaches under advisory are the 25th Street beach in Barnegat Light and the New Jersey beach in Long Beach Towship, which are both bay beaches.

Each week recreational beach water quality monitoring is performed by the state Department of Environmental Protection at approximately 180 ocean and 35 bay monitoring stations along the coast as part of the Cooperative Coastal Monitoring Program.

The likely culprit is heavy rain from this past week that picked up bacteria from geese or seagulls. Tests showed high levels of enterococci, a type of bacteria found in animal and human waste.

Meteorologist Dan Zarrow said the bursts of heavy rain that have fallen around the state since Sunday have cone to an end, but more thunderstorms are possible on Friday afternoon.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ

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