The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit is starting weekly water sampling of the area’s public bathing beaches for this year. The beaches will be monitored weekly throughout the summer season until August 31, 2019.
This year the following public swimming areas will be monitored:
- In Lanark County: Almonte Beach, Dalhousie Lake, Centennial Beach, Riverside Beach, Lanark Beach, Pakenham Beach, Rideau Ferry Yacht Club, Robertson Lake Beach, Smiths Falls Junior and Senior.
- In Leeds and Grenville: Sand Bay Charleston Lake County Park, St. Lawrence Park, Lyn Valley Conservation Area, South Crosby Beach, Portland Campbell Street Beach, Foley Mountain Beach, Joel Stone Beach, Kendrick’s Park, Lower Beverley Township Park, Bellamy Park, Kelly’s Beach, Merrickville, Westport Sand Lake.
Every week a total of five water samples will be collected from each beach. The results will then be analyzed for the presence of E. coli (Escherichia coli) bacteria. If the results exceed the bathing water standard of 200 E. coli, the beach will be posted with a “WARNING Unsafe for Bathing” sign indicating that the level of bacteria in the water may pose a risk to your health if you choose to swim. This information will appear on our website and social media. Updates will be posted Friday mornings by 9:30am starting June 28, 2018.
Research has shown that when people are swimming at beaches where the water has a high E. coli level, there is a direct relationship with an increase in ear, eye, nose and throat infections in swimmers. The bathing beach will remain posted until test results indicate that the water quality meets the bathing beach water standard. To help you better understand “Why Beaches are Posted”, check out our Beaches page.
Bacterial water quality is one parameter used to determine water quality. Other variables, which are assessed and evaluated, are the presence of a blue-green algae bloom, accidental spills that may pollute the water and any safety issue that could affect the health of the bathers. At any time if these variables are believed to have an impact on the beach’s safety, the beach will be posted as “Unsafe for Bathing”.