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Interior Health issues E. coli warning for Lake Country beach, swimming advisory in place

Interior Health has issued a beach swimming advisory for Lake Country’s Reiswig Regional Park.

Each summer, Regional District of Central Okanagan staff collect water samples from a number of regional beaches for Interior Health to test and analyze.

Beaches that have historically shown higher than acceptable E. coli counts from time to time during the summer months are sampled weekly, with at least five samples in a 30-day period.

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When bacteria levels rise to a certain level, a swimming advisory is issued informing swimmers that bacterial levels are currently higher than those allowed in the Guidelines for Canadian Recreational Water Quality.

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If water is ingested, swimmers may develop gastrointestinal illness, skin rashes, eye, ear and throat symptoms. The very young, the very old and people with weakened immunity are the most susceptible.

When a swimming advisory is in place, signage will be posted at the affected beach. Once testing shows bacteria levels have returned to acceptable levels the swimming advisory will be lifted and the signage removed.

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People are asked to protect themselves by avoiding swallowing lake water, swimming with an open cut or wound and swimming for 24 hours after a significant rainfall. It’s also advised that people experiencing digestive or intestinal problems stay clear of the lake.

For more information on beach water quality, contact Interior Health at 250 862-4200 or visit interiorhealth.ca.

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