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Jellyfish are Stinging People Along the Space Coast

If you’re planning to head over to the Space Coast, you may want to pack a vinegar spray bottle.

What You Need To Know

  • Several people stung by jellyfish over Labor Day weekend in Brevard County
  • Vinegar helps alleviate the sting.
  • Jellyfish are pretty common this time of year.

Brevard County Ocean Rescue Assistant Chief Derek Swor explains, there’s been a few jellyfish stings throughout Labor Day weekend.

“We’ve had a few jellyfish stings throughout the weekend. We treat them with vinegar, hot water like the shower. Any kind of bodily fluid is not a jellyfish treatment,” Brevard County Ocean Rescue Assistant Chief Derek Swor explains.

“It’s a seasonal thing this time of year. We get jellyfish, especially in October too.”

For the first time since April, Jennifer Murphy went to Playalinda beach because it’s more remote, making it easier to socially distance. She and her family were there fishing before sunrise and later decided to take a quick swim, when the calm beach day turned into a race to the pharmacy.

“All of a sudden, it felt like somebody had taken a welding rod and scrapped it across my arm and stomach, and I started screaming and ran out,” Murphy said.

To prevent this from happening to other people, Brevard County Fire Rescue wants beachgoers to check the flags before they get into the water.

Purple means there’s hazardous marine life near shore.

Murphy admits she may have overlooked checking beach conditions before going, but she says this was her first encounter with a jellyfish.

Next time, she plans to keep an eye out for the warning flags.

“There was a warning, when I looked this morning, and there was a warning about man-o-war last week for that same beach,” Murphy explains.

Jellyfish are 95 percent water – and most are harmless – but some can cause mild rashes to extreme allergic reactions.

The most common species in Florida are man-o-war, box jellyfish, mauve stingers, and moon jellyfish.  ​

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