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Water quality swimming advisory lifted for sound-side site in Carteret County

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MOREHEAD CITY, Carteret County - State recreational water quality officials lifted a water quality swimming advisory at a sound-site in Carteret County.

The advisory was lifted after water testing showed that bacteria levels dropped below the state's and Environmental Protection Agency's standards set for swimming and water play. The sign advising against swimming, skiing or otherwise coming into contact with the water has been removed.

The advisory was posted on September 7 at the Junior Sailing Camp in Taylor Creek at 2452 Lennoxville Road in Beaufort. At the time, test results 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.

Enterococci, the bacteria group used for testing, are found in the intestines of warm-blooded animals. While it doesn't cause illness directly, scientific studies show that its presence is closely correlated to the presence of disease-causing organisms. People swimming or playing in waters with higher bacteria levels than the standards set by the EPA and North Carolina have an increased risk of developing gastrointestinal illness.

For more information on the N.C. Recreational Water Quality program, visit its website here.

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