Another danger at the ocean: Dirty beach sand

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Another Concern at the Ocean: Dirty Beach Sand

If you think you can protect yourself from danger at the ocean by staying on the sand, think again. A new study found that sandy beaches might not be as clean as you think.

Dr. Marc Frischer of Skidaway Institute of Oceanography in Georgia told WSAV, "There's about 100 times more bacteria in the sand, per the same amount of volume, as there was in the water."

That's right, sandy beaches are dirtier than the ocean waves.

A new study out of the University of Hawaii at Manoa found E. coli, known for causing abdominal problems, in beach sand due to sewage contamination.

The researchers found that the bacteria tends to decay more slowly on the beach than in the water.

ABC did its own experiment and took samples of sand from three different beaches to be tested at Stanford University. Its findings were similar to those in the study.

"It's not unusual. We find this bacteria in sand at beaches all over the country and all over the world," Dr. Alexandria Boehm told ABC.

To prevent getting sick from the sand, here are some tips: Keep a close eye on your children to make sure sand doesn't reach their mouth, keep your hands clean, and be aware of beach restrictions.

Photos: 10 deadliest beaches in the world
10 deadliest beaches
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Another danger at the ocean: Dirty beach sand
CAPE TRIBULATION, AUSTRALIA (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
Hanakapiai Beach in Na Pali State Park on Kalalau Trail. (Photo by Getty)
Gansbaai, South Africa (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
Chowpatty Beach (left) to Nariman point (right) in Mumbai, India (Photo by PA)
New Kaimu Beach, in Kalapana, Hawaii. The black sand Kaimu Beach was formed on the eastern shores of the Big Island after lava from the Kilauea volcano engulfed the town of Kalapana in 1990, destroying most of the homes. (AP Photo/Marco Garcia)
New Smyrna Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
Fraser Island, Lake McKenzie, Australia (Photo by Getty)
Zipolite, Mexico (AP Photo/Jody Kurash)
Beaches of the Northern Territory, Australia (Photo by Getty)
Ponta Negra beach sits on the banks of the Rio Negro, the largest left tributary of the Amazon, in Manaus, Brazil (AP Photo)
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