Public health advisories were issued today due to
higher-than-normal levels of bacteria in ocean waters at Harris Beach State
Park and Mill Beach, both located in Curry County.
indicate higher-than-normal levels of fecal bacteria, which can result in
diarrhea, stomach cramps, skin rashes, upper respiratory infections and other
illnesses. Direct contact with the surf or water running into the surf in this
area should be avoided until the advisory is lifted, especially for children
and the elderly, who may be more vulnerable to waterborne bacteria.
pathogen and fecal bacteria levels in ocean waters can come from both shore and
inland sources, such as storm water runoff, sewer overflows, failing septic
systems, and animal waste from livestock, pets and wildlife.
advisory is in effect at Harris Beach State Park Beach and Mill Beach, visitors
should avoid wading in nearby creeks, pools of water on the beach, or in
discolored water, and stay clear of water runoff flowing into the ocean. Even
if there is no advisory in effect, officials recommend avoiding swimming in the
ocean within 48 hours after a rainstorm.
The status of
water contact advisories at beaches is subject to change. For the most recent
information on advisories, visit the Oregon
Beach Monitoring Program website or call 971-673-0400, or 877-290-6767
officials advise against water contact, they continue to encourage other
recreational activities (flying kites, picnicking, playing on the beach,
walking, etc.) on these beaches because they pose no health risk even during an
advisory. Neighboring beaches are not affected by this advisory.
state officials have used a federal Environmental Protection Agency grant to
monitor popular Oregon beaches and make timely reports to the public about
elevated levels of fecal bacteria. State organizations participating in this
program are the Oregon Public Health Division, Oregon Department of
Environmental Quality and Oregon Parks and Recreation Department.
# # #