Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

TESTING THE WATERS : A Guide to Water Quality at Vacation Beaches

[via blog post at Notions Capitol- Surf’s Up..]

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Find a report on a beach by entering zip code at  http://www.nrdc.org/water/oceans/ttw/state-summaries.asp

From the Executive Overview at the Natural Defenses Research Council site

NRDC’s annual analysis of water quality and public notification data at coastal U.S. beaches found that the number of beach closing and advisory days in 2011 reached the third-highest level in the 22-year history of our report, totaling 23,481 days (a 3% decrease from 2010). More than two-thirds of closings and advisories were issued because bacteria levels in beachwater exceeded public health standards, indicating the presence of human or animal waste in the water. The portion of all monitoring samples that exceeded national recommended health standards for designated beach areas remained stable at 8% in 2011, compared with 8% in 2010 and 7% for the four previous years. In addition, the number of beaches monitored in 2011 increased slightly (2%) from a five-year low in 2010. The largest known source of pollution was stormwater runoff (47%, compared with 36% last year). The 2011 results confirm that our nation’s beaches continue to experience significant water pollution that puts swimmers and local economies at risk…

..

Polluted Beachwater Makes Swimmers Sick and Hurts Coastal Economies

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has estimated that up to 3.5 million people become ill from contact with raw sewage from sanitary sewer overflows each year.1..

..Illnesses associated with polluted beachwater include stomach flu, skin rashes, pinkeye, respiratory infections, meningitis, and hepatitis. Children are especially vulnerable..

Quick Links for this report include

July 12, 2012 - Posted by | Public Health | , , , ,

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