Local Scientist Warns Beachgoers About E-Coli On Sandy Beaches


A local scientist is warning beachgoers to be careful around mucky sand.

Deputy Director and Physical Scientist of the Great Lakes Regional Office of the International Joint Commission Raj Bejankiwar says when a beach is closed or not recommended for swimming due to high e-coli counts, the sand can pose a danger as well.

"There are a lot of studies, both in Canada and in the United States, that found e-coli can exist in sand too," he says."They found some places, they found higher concentration of e-coli in sand than in the actual water."

He says some people believe staying out of the water will keep them safe, but they also need to be careful around the mucky sand which is covered in green matter.

"Places where you find a massive algae washing ashore from the water are the green stuff or anything moist on the sand, that is an indication of where the bacteria can survive more."

He recommends beachgovers stay away from the moist places on the sand, especially along the shoreline, and stay in the dry areas.

He notes beaches that are well maintained and raked often will not pose a health risk.