People spotted swimming in Lake Eola amid flooding in Orlando. Here’s why that is a bad idea

It is always illegal to swim in Lake Eola, according to city

Trooper Steve Montiero spotted two people swimming in Lake Eola, which jumped its banks following Ian. (Copyright 2022 by WKMG ClickOrlando - All rights reserved.)

ORLANDO, Fla. – The punishing rains from Ian caused Lake Eola to jump its banks in downtown Orlando, flooding nearby Robinson Street.

The high waters of the ordinarily shallow lake proved to be too big of a temptation for at least two people. News 6′s Trooper Steve Montiero spotted two people swimming in the water while reporting on the storm impacts.

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Swimming in Lake Eola is illegal under even ideal conditions. In fact, according to the city’s website, “swimming in a city lake is prohibited, except as authorized by posting.”

Additionally, people should avoid wading into or swimming through any flood waters.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advises that floodwaters may contain:

  • Downed power lines
  • Human and livestock waste
  • Household, medical, and industrial hazardous waste (chemical, biological, and radiological)
  • Coal ash waste that can contain carcinogenic compounds such as arsenic, chromium, and mercury
  • Other contaminants that can lead to illness
  • Physical objects such as lumber, vehicles, and debris
  • Wild or stray animals such as rodents and snakes

Exposure to contaminated floodwater can cause:

  • Wound infections
  • Skin rash
  • Gastrointestinal illness
  • Tetanus
  • Leptospirosis (not common)

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About the Author:

Thomas Mates is a digital storyteller for News 6 and He also produces the podcast Florida Foodie. Thomas is originally from Northeastern Pennsylvania and worked in Portland, Oregon before moving to Central Florida in August 2018. He graduated from Temple University with a degree in Journalism in 2010.