Guam EPA issues beach advisory

02 September 2011

Guam EPA issues beach advisory and makes note to large amounts of stormwater runoff

The Guam Environmental Protection Agency (Guam EPA) today issued the standard weekly beach report with an additional warning to residents venturing into Guams nearshore waters this weekend.

According to the advisory, Guam EPA notes the large amount of stormwater runoff on Friday, Sept. 2, 2011. This stormwater runoff may contain additional bacteria and cause them to contaminate shoreline more than usual. High concentrations of bacteria may be associated with stormwater runoff. Particular areas to avoid during high stormwater runoff events include the shoreline from Dungcas Beach in East Hagta Bay to Padre Palomo Park Beach, and West Hagta Bay from Paseo to Adelup Beach Park. These areas should be avoided.

Guam EPAs Monitoring and Analytical Division will continue sampling water in these areas to ensure the public is notified regarding any changes in water quality.

This type of rain event highlights why management is a critical issue. Anything washed down streets may end up in the rivers and streams of Guam and eventually the ocean, said Ivan Quinata, administrator of Guam EPA. Not only is stormwater a potential environmental hazard but it can affect public health and enjoyment of the environment.

Swimming, fishing or playing in unsafe waters may result in minor illnesses such as sore throats or diarrhea. It might also result in more serious illnesses such as meningitis, encephalitis, or severe gastroenteritis.

Children, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems have a greater chance of getting sick when they come in contact with contaminated water.