How to avoid the dirty beaches and find the clean ones
Warning signs are posted when beach water exceeds accepted coliform levels
Vancouver has some great beaches to swim in, but The Early Edition dug up a few things you should know before you decide to take a dip.
Vancouver-area waters are sampled throughout the swimming season to determine compliance with the Canadian Recreational Water Guidelines.
When water in the vicinity of bathing beaches exceeds the 200 coliform/100 ml level, the medical health officer will post warning signs indicating that "This Water Does Not Meet Health Standards for Swimming or Wading".
Beaches in Vancouver with highest coliform count per 100 ml:
- East False Creek (not classified as a swimming/bathing beach): 380 geometric mean of coliform count
- Sunset Beach: 150 geometric mean of coliform count
Top three beaches in Vancouver with lowest coliform count per 100 ml:
- Jericho Beach: 31 geometric mean of coliform count
- Spanish Banks: 23 geometric mean of coliform count
- Locarno beach: 16 geometric mean of coliform count
3 signs you should avoid this beach:
- Enclosed bay areas with shallow warmer water
- Bathing beaches that are very close to marinas
- Beaches close to water runoff after heavy rainfalls
3 signs you should be safe to take a dip:
- Good tidal movement
- Open bay areas
- Clean sand around the area
With files from The Early Edition's intern Andrea Sanchez. You can follow her on twitter @andreaesb