Back in the Swim of Things

Written by admin, June 1, 2015

June 1, 2015 – Public Health Kicks off Beach Water Quality Testing Today –

Follow @PCCHU on Twitter for Regular Updates

Beach TestingWith the official summer countdown underway, Public Health Inspectors from Peterborough Public Health will begin beach sampling for this year’s swimming season on Monday, June 1.  Public beaches in the city and county will be regularly tested to ensure water quality conditions are safe for recreational use.

Local residents will be able to check the most recent status of public beaches at any time by visiting www.peterboroughpublichealth.ca or by calling Public Health at 705-743-1000 during office hours.   Residents are also encouraged to follow Public Health on Twitter @PCCHU for beach updates throughout the summer.

The routine surveillance program for all public beaches runs from June until August. The city beaches at Rogers Cove and Beavermead are sampled by Public Health Inspectors every business day, and public beaches in the county are sampled at least once a week, except for Chandos Beach, Quarry Bay Beach, and White’s Beach which are sampled at least once in June, July and August.

Though PCCHU will always maintain its surveillance schedule, the following may result in unsafe levels of bacteria between sampling periods:

  • Heavy rainfall High winds or wave activity
  • Large numbers of water fowl                                                    Large numbers of swimmers

Some things that you are able to do to ensure the water quality remains safe:

  • Do not feed waterfowl
  • Do not let children swim in soiled diapers
  • Pick up your garbage
  • Clean up after your dog

Water samples will be submitted to the Peterborough Public Health Ontario Laboratory for bacteriological analysis.  The water samples are going to be tested for E. coli bacteria, an indicator of fecal contamination in the water. It takes approximately 24 hours for Public Health to receive and analyze the water quality results from the lab.

If the results return with E. coli levels exceeding 100 E. coli cfu/100mL of water the public beach will be “posted”. This means the water is unsafe for recreational use, including swimming.  When this happens, Public Health will post signs around the beach area to inform the public not to come into contact with the water as it is a potential threat to human health. The next level of public awareness would be to post the beach as “closed”. This is when a significant risk to human health and safety has been identified. This results when there are such signs of hazardous or infectious material in the water or when there is a blue-green algae bloom. In these situations, swimming is not permitted and beach access is restricted or eliminated.

The following beaches will be tested for the 2015 summer months:

City of Peterborough Beaches:
• Beavermead (2011 Ashburnham Drive)                     • Roger’s Cove (131 Maria Street)

Peterborough County Beaches

  • Buckhorn Beach ( John St., Buckhorn)
  • Chandos Beach (Hwy 620, North Kawartha)
  • Crowe’s Line Beach (Crowe’s Line Rd., Harvey)
  • Curve Lake Lance Wood Park (Whetung St E, Curve Lake)
  • Curve Lake Henrys Gumming (Chemong St S, Curve Lake)
  • Douro (205 Douro Second Line, Douro-Dummer)
  • Ennismore (1053 Ennis Road, Ennismore)
  • Jones Beach ( 908 Jones Beach Road, Bridgenorth)
  • Hiawatha (1 Lakeshore Rd, Hiawatha)
  • Lakefield (100 Hague Boulevard,  Lakefield)
  • Norwood (12 Belmont St, Norwood)
  • Quarry Bay (1986 Northey’s Bay Rd,  Woodview)
  • Sandy Beach (Lakehurst Road, Curve Lake)
  • Selwyn (2251 Birch Island Road, Selwyn)
  • Squirrel Creek Conservation Area (2445 Wallace Point Rd, South Monaghan)
  • Warsaw Caves (289 Caves Rd, Warsaw)
  • White’s Beach (Clearview Dr, Galway

 

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For further information, please contact:

Brittany Cadence

Communications Supervisor

705-743-1000, ext. 391