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MIAMI (CBSMiami/AP) – Thousands of Floridians lined beaches to demand state leaders stop future red tide outbreaks like the one killing sea life on the state’s Gulf Coast.

The demonstrations were held Sunday.

The “Hands Along the Water” events happened on the Gulf and Atlantic coasts from the St. Petersburg area to Fort Myers to Fort Lauderdale.

The stench on some beaches from sea life killed by the current red tide outbreak caused protestors to wear breathing masks.

The toxic algae bloom has overrun Florida’s southern Gulf Coast this summer as thousands of dead fish, hundreds of sea turtles, some dolphins and even a whale shark have washed ashore. There is debate over whether pollution worsened the outbreak.

The state is also dealing with freshwater algae outbreak that is clogging canals connected to Lake Okeechobee. It’s caused by fertilizer runoff.

(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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