JERSEY SHORE - Unsafe levels of bacteria in the ocean prompted the closure of several beaches at the Jersey Shore this week.

Heavy rainfall this week washed pollution into New Jersey’s waterways, spiking bacteria levels. 

Three beaches in Ocean County were closed for a time Wednesday. By Thursday evening all beaches were reopened.

The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection also issued a dozen swim advisories in Monmouth and Ocean counties for a time, but lifted the warnings when a second round of testing showed that the bacterial levels were diluted. 

The pollution often comes from outflow pipes that are located on some beaches. Since water testing is not done daily, experts suggest that beach visitors keep their distance from the pipes. The DEP also suggests staying out of the water following a heavy rainfall.

Contact with unsafe levels of this kind of bacteria could cause respiratory and gastrointestinal illnesses.

A full list of beach advisories can be found on the DEP website.