Vancouver Coastal Health is warning swimmers not to go in the water at English Bay because of high E. coli levels.

Recent testing at the beach in Vancouver’s West End showed the water had too much E. coli bacteria in it for safe swimming. The health authority, as well as the Vancouver Park Board, issued the warning to the public on Friday afternoon.

Vancouver Coastal Health says high levels of E. coli in the water increase the risk of swimmers developing gastrointestinal illnesses or getting skin and eye irritation.

Some events that increase E. coli counts in Vancouver’s swimming areas include heavy rainfall and stormwater runoff that can transport animal waste, sewer overflow, and contamination from vehicles into the water. Leaking septic tanks and discharge from boats also harm water quality.

Second Beach, Third Beach, and Sunset Beach are all still clean enough to swim in, according to VCH.

With files from Megan Devlin


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