Beaches and Your Health
How Does Water Quality Relate to Public Health?
Why Do Microbial Populations Increase?
Potential sources of microbiological contamination of beach waters are:
For instance, significant rainfall events or water from garden hoses and sprinklers can cause elevated levels of pathogen indicators as the water flows over streets and yards and into the storm drains washing pollutants such as motor oil, pesticides, paints, grass clippings, and pet waste. In most places, whatever goes down a storm drain flows directly into local creeks, rivers, lakes, and eventually into the ocean, threatening water quality for humans and wildlife.
The most common causes for elevated bacteria counts at Madison beaches are: