Beach Postings for High E. Coli Levels

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The Niagara Region Public Health Unit monitors 13 beach sites along Lake Ontario, Lake Erie, the southern Niagara River and the public beach at Dils Lake. They take weekly samples and post closings when the bacteria levels are high and health could be affected. They check for E.coli that could cause infections, especially for elderly, young children and those with depressed immune systems. Beaches are posted as unsafe for swimming because of floating debris, oil, excessive weed growth or bad odours.

 

In 2007, the monitored beaches in Niagara were posted 27% of the time. Niagara’s number of postings has doubled since 2004 when they were posted 12.57% of the time. The five Lake Erie beaches in Port Colborne, and the three Lake Ontario beaches in St. Catharines had the highest number of swimming days lost at 154 days and 208 days respectively in 2007.
 

Table 8   Beach monitoring and postings in Niagara 2003-2006

 

Year

Beaches Monitored

# Days Posted

# Days Monitored

Percentage of Swimming Days Lost

2003

50

1176

4550

25.85%

2004

52

595

4732

12.57%

2005

53

819

4641

16.98%

2006

36

1050

3852

27.26%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source: Niagara Region Public Health. (2006). Niagara Region Beach Monitoring Report.

 

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