One Peterborough beach and another north of the city tested for unsafe levels of E-coli bacteria on Tuesday.
According to Peterborough Public Health, test samples taken Tuesday at Rogers Cove beach on Little Lake in Peterborough, and Jones Beach on Chemong Lake in Bridgenorth, both had levels of bacteria that were deemed unsafe.
The health unit says the result may be due to several reasons such as heavy rainfall, large numbers of waterfowl, high winds or wave activity or a large number of swimmers.
On Thursday, the health unit said a sample at Rogers Cove deemed the beach safe again. Jones Beach remains unsafe.
Samples are taken weekly at 20 beaches throughout the city and county, as well as Curve Lake First Nation and Hiawatha First Nation. The city’s two public beaches are sampled at least once each business day.
The health unit deems a public beach “unsafe” when the level of E. coli in the water exceeds 200 E. colicfu/100ml of water. When the level of E. coli exceeds 200 cfu/100ml, the water is unsafe for recreational use including swimming.
Signage is in place when a beach is deemed unsafe.
The health unit is also reminding residents to report and protect themselves from blue-green algae which bloom during the summer.
To date, there have been no reports received of blue-green algae this season. The algae are bacteria which are known to rapidly reproduce, and they can release toxins when ruptured or dying.
“It can be tricky even for experts to identify blue-green algae, so it’s important for residents to familiarize themselves with the different categories on our website should they suspect a bloom in their area,” stated Wanda Tonus, public health inspector.
“We want to enjoy our lakes during the warm months, and being aware of blue-green algae is another way to protect our families and our pets.”
To report a blue-green algae bloom, contact the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change at 1-866-MOETIPS (663-8477).
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