Government has ordered the Cane Garden Bay beach closed due to ‘poor water quality’.
Authorities who recently conducted water quality tests at the beach said they suspect the water was exposed to untreated sewage from a non-functioning sewage plant nearby.
“The water sample results showed very high bad bacterial counts for Cane Garden Bay within the designated swimming area at both the cemetery and Rhymer’s restaurant,” said Acting Conservation Officer, Kelvin Penn.
Government sources told BVI News that the water was saturated with the E coli bacteria.
E coli, which is short for Escherichia coli, is a type of bacteria that lives in the intestines of people and animals.
Symptoms associated with E coli bacteria include watery to bloody diarrhea, vomiting, and mild to severe abdominal cramps.
The Ministry of Health stated recently that in severe cases of illness, persons may have seizures or strokes, need blood transfusions and kidney dialysis, or live with permanent kidney damage. The ministry also said severe cases can lead to death.
Meanwhile, water quality tests were also done at Smuggler’s Cove and the Long Bay/Beef Island beaches.
A media release from the Ministry of Natural Resources reported that those beaches were found to be of ‘excellent’ water quality.
The ministry did not specify how it will address the severe bacteria issue at Cane Garden Bay but claimed that it was “working diligently to clean our beaches and coastlines.”
News of Cane Garden Bay being closed comes less than 24 hours after Representative of the Second Electoral District Melvin Turnbull complained that government has done nothing to clean up the beach, which is a major tourist spot.
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