State recreational water quality officials today advised beachgoers to be aware of the floodwaters being pumped to the ocean surf in Emerald Isle. Surfers and swimmers should avoid these sites.
Recent heavy rains caused flooding of streets, yards, and housing in parts of Emerald Isle and nearby communities. To minimize the flooding damage and to ensure roads are accessible for emergency vehicles, the town has begun pumping floodwater into the ocean around Fawn Drive, Doe Drive and 16th Street. The town is pumping of floodwater into the sound at the end of Channel Drive and at 10012 Coast Guard Road.
These waters can contain pollutants such as waste from wildlife and pets, oil and gasoline from parking lots and waste from septic systems or sewers.
State recreational water quality officials will place signs at the discharge sites along the ocean beach to warn the public of the possible health risk. There is no public access area at the sound discharge site, so no sign will be placed there.
These notices do not imply disease-causing organisms are present in the water but does identify an increased chance that contamination and adverse health effects could occur.
State officials will remove the signs and notify the public 24 hours after the pumping stops.
State recreational water quality officials sample 210 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.