Looking to cool off - swimming advisories at local beaches
Very pleasant calm weather is expected to prevail for the next few days as we head into and through the weekend. If you are looking for a place to cool off, you might just want to check to see if there is a swimming advisory or closure in effect before you get your trunks on.
The Simcoe Muskoka District Health unit tests water quality at beaches regularly and will post advisories or closures depending on their findings. And while a closure is self explanatory, an advisory doesn't mean the water is off limits. During a swimming advisory, the beach is posted with warning signs that the most recent water samples showed bacteria in numbers that may increase your risk of developing minor skin, eye, ear, nose or throat infections or stomach illness. If you choose to swim during a swimming advisory avoid dunking your head or swallowing the water.
There are currently 10 beaches posted with advisories - and no closures.
Couchiching Beach swimming advisory issued July 20
The City of Orillia has received notice from the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit that a swim advisory has been issued for Couchiching Beach, located at Couchiching Beach Park, due to a higher than normal bacteria count.
A swimming advisory is issued when the bacteria levels exceed those considered acceptable by the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit. An advisory is a warning to swimmers, but it is not a beach closure. During a swimming advisory, the beach is posted with warning signs indicating there may be an increased risk of developing minor irritations and infections. If you choose to swim during a swimming advisory, it may be prudent to avoid ducking your head or swallowing the water.
Bacteria counts can be affected by many different factors with the most common being rain, wind and water fowl. For more information, visit simcoemuskokahealth.org.
Lifeguards are off duty during a swim advisory and swimmers are cautioned to swim at their own risk.
Moose Beach and Portage Bay remain unaffected and are open at this time.
For a full list of current swimming advisories - visit the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit website.