Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Fecal Matters: Water Recreation Safety Tips During Heavy Rains!

BEACH Program Update

Attention beach goers! Some of you hard core Pacific North westerners may be hitting the water for some fun in the rain this holiday week. If you’re hearty and daring enough to endure the weather please remember a few health and safety concerns:

Heavy rains typically raise the amount of bacteria in water bodies, so be careful when you go near potential sources — such as sewage treatment plant outfalls, stormwater outfalls, and agricultural centers.

When the Pacific Northwest is being inundated with rain and wind, the BEACH Program receives many calls about sewage spills, combined sewer overflows, and problems at wastewater treatment plants during heavy rains. This weather can put a damper on outdoor fun, and it also overwhelms our wastewater treatment systems.

Keep in mind that some overflows, sewage spills, and combined sewer overflows aren’t reported soon enough to warn people, so be careful in areas that may be affected. Stay safe and dry and have a happy Thanksgiving!

Looking for more information about the BEACH Program? www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/eap/beach

Stay updated about water quality at your beaches by keeping up with us on our blog

Fecal Matters
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Julie Lowe is the BEACH Program Manager and can be reached at julie.lowe@ecy.wa.gov

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