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High levels of bacteria detected

KALAPAKI — Those who swim in Kalapaki Bay may be floating in some of the most-polluted areas of the island, according to data colected by the Surfrider Kaua‘i Bluewater Task Force.

The Kaua‘i Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation is reporting the results of its monthly water quality sampling Blue Water Task Force. Surfrider samples out in the ocean at surf sites and in the mouths of streams where keiki play, both places that the Hawai‘i Department of Health never samples. All our results may be found on the Surfrider website:

This month’s results show the effects of fecal contamination of streams by surface runoff and groundwater contamination from cesspools. Note that the six highest concentrations of bacteria are in streams and estuaries that are consistently polluted.

Some of the sites (see chart) exceed safe levels of bacteria in the water. Therefore, Kaitlyn Jacobs, of Surfrider Kaua‘i, said, “Make sure to rinse or wash off whenever you come out of the water to prevent infections,” at all times and locations.

The Bluewater Task Force monitoring program goal is to provide water-quality information to augment state-run beach monitoring to identify polluted waters and make sure residents and visitors are aware of potential health threats at the beach. The state Department of Health also administers a water-quality-monitoring program.

Hawai‘i Department of Health samples 12 beaches each month and their results are found at:
Source: The Garden Island

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