Contact 5 Investigation: What's in our water?

They are the sights and sounds that make us famous. South Florida's glorious gems: our waterways and our beaches.

"Divers from all over the country,all over the world will visit this area for diving," said Skip Comagere, the owner of Force E Dive Shop, near the Blue Heron Bridge in Riviera Beach.

While the sight of the sea can be breathtaking, every now and then the No Swimming warning signs can make you wonder... what's really in the water you're swimming in?

"The fact that I don't know what I'm putting in my mouth, down my nose or sitting in my ears," concerns Gary Gillespie, who lives along the Intracoastal Waterway, not far from Peanut Island.

He used to swim the Intracoastal daily, but not anymore. He says it's a "lack of knowledge, I don't think anyone knows."

He's talking about a troubling trend the Palm Beach County Health Department stumbled on around this time last year.

"It's not stuff you'd want to be swimming in, not generally speaking, no," said Tim O'Connor, the health department's spokesman.

What did the health department find in the water? What did county officials do when they heard about it?  What did the Contact 5 Investigators find when we conducted our water test? It's my special report, Monday on NewsChannel 5 at 11 p.m.

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