District builds safer lagoon monitoring platforms

PALM BAY, Fla., Nov. 17, 2016 — St. Johns River Water Management District researchers will be safer while checking the status of water quality monitoring equipment in the Indian River Lagoon, thanks to new platforms the agency is constructing at five locations.

“The district takes safety seriously, particularly in an unpredictable environment like the Indian River Lagoon,” St. Johns River Water Management District Executive Director Dr. Ann Shortelle said. “Moving monitoring stations from causeway fenders to free-standing platforms removes our scientists from potentially hazardous wakes from boats that pass only yards away.”

The monitoring stations, installed at five locations from Vero to the Mosquito Lagoon, contain sensors that collect real-time data on water quality parameters, such as nitrogen, phosphorus, plankton, salinity and water temperature. Data flows continuously from the monitors to the District’s telemetry network located at the District’s headquarters in Palatka. The sensors at the stations were funded through a Florida Department of Environmental Protection grant in 2014.