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Swimming advisory lifted for location in Pamlico

(MGN Online photo)

A sound-side swimming advisory in Pamlico County has been lifted.

The N.C. Recreational Water Quality Program lifted the advisory for a sound side location near Dawson Creek Bridge. The advisory was issued Wednesday. They are typically lifted after 24 hours.

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A swimming advisory has been issued for a sound-side site in Pamlico County and a location in Beaufort County

The N.C. Recreational Water Quality Program said the impacted location is on the south side of Dawson Creek Bridge in Janerio. Tests on Tuesday indicated bacteria levels exceeded the state and federal action levels. Testing will be done again later in the week and it's possible the advisory will be lifted by Thursday.

A similar warning was issued at Ragged Point at Goose Creek State Park in Beaufort County on Tuesday. It was lifted on Wednesday.

Below is a press release with more information.

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Pamlico County advisory

An advisory against swimming was posted today at a sound-side site in Pamlico County, where state officials found bacteria levels in the water that exceed the state’s and Environmental Protection Agency’s recreational water quality standards.

The advisory is for waters at the public access on the south side of Dawson Creek Bridge in Janerio. Tests of water samples taken from these waters on July 10 indicate bacteria levels that exceed the state and federal action levels of 276 enterococci per 100 milliliters for Tier 2 low-usage sites. Swimming areas are classified based on recreational use and are referred to as tiers.

The N.C. Recreational Water Quality Program tests water quality at ocean and sound beaches in accordance with federal and state laws. Enterococci, the bacteria group used for testing, is found in the intestines of warm-blooded animals. While it does not cause illness, scientific studies indicate that enterococci may indicate the presence of other disease-causing organisms. People swimming or playing in waters with bacteria levels higher than the action level have an increased risk of developing gastrointestinal illness or skin infections.

This advisory is not a beach closing, nor does the advisory affect the entire Dawson Creek area. Swimming advisories affect water within 200 feet of the sign. The sign posted reads as follows:

ATTENTION

SWIMMING IN THIS AREA IS NOT RECOMMENDED. BACTERIA TESTING INDICATES

LEVELS OF CONTAMINATION THAT MAY BE HAZARDOUS TO YOUR

HEALTH. THIS ADVISORY AFFECTS WATERS WITHIN 200’ OF THIS SIGN.

OFFICE OF THE STATE HEALTH DIRECTOR

State officials will continue testing the site, and they will remove the sign and notify the public again when the bacteria levels decrease to levels below the standards.

State recreational water quality officials sample 209 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.

To find out more about North Carolina’s beach water quality, visit the N.C. Recreational Water Quality Program’s website at: http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/recreational-water-quality or on Twitter.com @ncrecprgm.

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Beaufort County advisory

State recreational water quality officials today lifted a water quality swimming advisory at a sound-side site in Beaufort County.

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

The advisory was posted at Ragged Point at Goose Creek State Park swim area in the Pamlico River near Washington on July 3. This site showed a monthly average of the bacteria enterococci above the EPA-mandated level of 35 enterococci per 100 milliliters of water, the standard for high use sites. Subsequent testing at this site found that levels have fallen to within the standard. The sign advising against swimming, skiing or otherwise coming into contact with the water has been removed.

Enterococci, the bacteria group used for testing, are found in the intestines of warm-blooded animals. While it is not known to cause illness, scientific studies indicate that enterococci may indicate the presence of other disease-causing organisms. People swimming or playing in waters with bacteria levels higher than the standards have an increased risk of developing gastrointestinal illness or skin infections.

Coastal recreational waters in North Carolina are generally clean. However, it is important to continue monitoring them, so we can inform the public of any localized problems. The N.C. Recreational Water Quality Program samples 209 sites in coastal waters of the state, most of them on a weekly basis from April through October.

For more information on the N.C. Recreational Water Quality program, visit its website at: http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/recreational-water-quality or on Twitter.com @ncrecprgm.

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