YARMOUTH COUNTY - Water at Port Maitland and Mavillette beaches is now safe to swim in after a month of being deemed unsafe because of high bacteria counts, but what about the level at untested beaches?
The Nova Scotia Lifeguard Service (NSLS) closed five salt water beaches in the province earlier this summer because of high bacteria counts. Three of them reopened (Heather Beach, Queensland Beach, Port Hood), but Port Maitland and Mavillette, the only beaches regularly tested by the NSLS, remained closed for weeks longer.
The matter of testing unsupervised beaches hasn’t been discussed by the Municipality of Yarmouth council before says warden Leland Anthony.
”It might be something that the municipality could do just to have peace of mind,” said Anthony.
“I don’t think the cost is out of line,” he added.
He suggested that residents who are concerned about possible high levels of bacteria in the water at their local beaches contact their local councilor to request regular testing.
Bruce Nunn, media relations advisor with the environment department provided the same advice.
He says each summer, the province tests water samples at all 20 beaches that are managed by the province and monitored by lifeguards from the Nova Scotia Lifesaving Society.
“Any municipality, community group, property owner, or concerned beach user can get water samples from other beaches tested by consulting with an accredited lab,” he said.
A list of contact information for testing labs is available on the provincial website.
Untested beaches in the region include:
Sunday Point Beach
John’s Cove Beach
False Harbour Beach
The Hawk Beach
Comeau’s Hill Beach
Pinkney’s Point Beach