Stay informed by accessing beach advice
The EPA is encouraging beachgoers to subscribe to a seasonal information service this summer that advises when conditions in Adelaide’s beaches are unsuitable for swimming.
EPA Operations Director Science, Assessment and Planning Peter Dolan said Adelaide’s beaches are considered safe and healthy but for about two percent of the time they can be impacted by rainfall or stormwater that is flushed into the sea resulting in discoloured water.
“The EPA runs a seasonal service during the daylight saving period for beachgoers to receive email notifications when the water is discoloured or murky, by subscribing to it through the EPA website,” Mr Dolan said.
“The advice for swimmers to avoid discoloured water is sent during periods of poor water quality which usually follows a major rain event,” he said.
“In summer when the rain is not as frequent, there is a build-up of material trapped in stormwater drains that when it rains, gets flushed into the sea.”
Stormwater is continuously measured near beach outflows that measures both water flow and turbidity.
“When either of the measurements exceed certain levels there is a possibility that beach water quality could be impacted,” Mr Dolan said.
“Stormwater can also reduce visibility in the water, it can smell and could cause a mild illness such as a stomach upset if ingested which is why we issue these warnings to avoid swimming in it when these incidents occur.
Generally after a heavy storm the discoloured water will take about two days to dissipate.
Beachgoers can also choose to receive advice online through Alert SA.
The beaches that are monitored along Adelaide’s metropolitan coastline span from Semaphore in the north to Noarlunga in the south.
For more information and to subscribe to this email alert service, visit the EPA website.