The two areas with elevated bacterial counts from this week’s sampling (Boardwalk Beach in the town of East Lyme and Green Harbor Beach in the city of New London) were re-sampled on Friday May 22, 2020. Results of the re-samples were below the bacterial action levels set by the State of Connecticut and the swimming advisories in these areas have been lifted.
Please be aware that rain or other contaminating events occurring before the Wednesday and Friday morning sampling can lead to elevated bacterial counts, especially in bathing areas with stormwater runoff (storm drain pipes and/or extensive impervious surfaces) or low water turnover (inland bathing areas). We recommend those individuals responsible for the bathing areas take these events into consideration.
Ledge Light Health District conducts weekly bathing water sampling from Memorial Day through Labor Day for the Towns and Cities of East Lyme, Groton, Ledyard, New London, Old Lyme, Stonington, and Waterford. The 2020 sampling season began on May 20, 2020.
Beach or bathing water quality is measured by the presence of enterococcal organisms, which are a group of organisms that may indicate the presence of potentially harmful bacteria. The State of Connecticut has issued guidelines for bathing water quality which are used to determine if a bathing area needs to be resampled or posted with an advisory. A concentration of enterococcal organisms exceeding 104 colonies per 100 ml of marine water and 235 colonies per 100 ml of freshwater is considered unsatisfactory for bathing.
Ledge Light Health District wants to ensure that your day at the beach doesn’t result in illness related to poor water quality. At least once a week from mid-May to mid-September, our Sanitarians collect water samples from different bathing areas throughout the District. The water samples are then sent to the State laboratory for analysis. If any of the samples exceed the State guidelines we resample the water to verify the result. If the second test confirms the level, a bathing advisory is posted at that location. We will continue to monitor the site and remove the posting as soon as the levels are safe. If you have any additional questions concerning beaches or public bathing water, please contact Danielle Holmes, Sanitarian.
Bathing Water Sampling Sites
The sampling sites in bold are EPA beach grant beaches (EPA monitors results from these beaches). For a map of sampling sites, click here.
Oak Grove Beach
East Shore (North)
Millstone Point Beach
- The EPA Beach Monitoring and Notification website has information on public health and environmental protection for beachgoers across the country.
- The CDC has information on staying safe and enjoying healthy water activities.
- Visit the Sound Health Explorer website for water quality reports for beaches along Long Island Sound.