Onslow County Swimming Advisory Lifted

A swimming advisory for two places in Eastern Carolina have been lifted.

Below is the news release from the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources.


The state Division of Environmental Health has lifted a water quality swimming advisory and an alert for two recreational swimming areas in Onslow County.

These notifications were lifted because water testing shows that bacteria levels have dropped below the state and Environmental Protection Agency’s standards set for swimming and water play.

The advisory and the alert were issued Friday because both had test results that showed these areas had exceeded 276 enterococci per 100 milliliters of water for low usage sites.

The alert was issued at the Shellrock Landing Wildlife Ramp off the Intracoastal Waterway, one-half mile south of Bear Inlet in Hubert, and the advisory was posted at the Wards Shore public access off of South Water Street in Swansboro. These sites now show bacteria levels below the state and federal recreational water quality standards.

The sign advising against swimming, skiing or otherwise coming into contact with the water has been removed.

Enterococci, the name for the group of bacteria used for testing, are found in the intestines of warm-blooded animals. While enterocci maynot cause illness itself, scientific studies indicate that the presence of enterococci is closely correlated to the presence of other organisms that may cause illness. People swimming or playing in waters with bacteria levels higher than the standards have an increased risk of developing gastrointestinal illness.

Coastal recreational waters in North Carolina are generally clean. However, officials say it is important to continue monitoring them, so we can inform the public of any localized problems. Environmental health officials sample 240 sites throughout the coastal region, most of them on a weekly basis, from April to October. Testing continues on a reduced schedule during the rest of the year, when the waters are colder.

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