The precautionary advisory against swimming issued due to Hurricane Ian is now lifted for all coastal waters including estuarine rivers.
State officials today lifted the precautionary advisory for sound-side rivers in Pamlico, Craven and Beaufort Counties. Test results of water samples taken from these waters show bacterial levels that meet the state’s and Environmental Protection Agency’s safe swimming standards.
The precautionary advisory was issued Sept. 30 as Hurricane Ian approached North Carolina and South Carolina because excessive rains and flooding can cause high levels of bacteria in the water that can make people sick. Floodwaters and storm water runoff can contain pollutants such as waste from septic systems, sewer line breaks, pet waste, wildlife, petroleum products and other chemicals.
Coastal recreational waters in North Carolina are generally clean. However, it is important to continue monitoring them and inform the public of any localized problems. The N.C. Recreational Water Quality Program samples 215 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 or to a view a map of testing sites, visit the program’s website, and follow the program’s Twitter feed.