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Feeling the heat?

Wednesday, 21 December 2010

Feeling the heat?

With summer upon us in full force, Horizons Regional Council’s annual water testing at popular swimming and recreational spots is well underway, giving people the information they need to escape the heat.

Horizons does weekly monitoring of water quality at 13 swimming spots. Based on the results, the spots are given a green light when it’s good to swim, amber when precaution should be taken, and red if it’s best not to swim.

Test results for the week of 15 December show 10 of the 13 spots have a green light. Results provide a guide to water health at the time of testing but swimmers should use the following rule of thumb before jumping in, as water quality can change daily based on the weather:

• It is safest to wait three days after rain before swimming at river swimming spots.
• If the water looks clean and clear, and it’s a sunny day, you should be good to go.

In addition to the weekly testing at some spots, there are 29 popular swimming areas that have a permanent grading system, based on knowledge of the water quality at the sites.

The top grades for beaches listed on the website are Foxton, Himatangi Waitarere and Castle Cliff.

Top river spots listed are Kahuterawa Stream, Ohau River at Gladstone Reserve and Kimberley Reserve, Pohangina River at Totara Reserve, Rangitikei River at Mangaweka, and Tokomaru River at Horseshoe Bend.

As well as making the results available on the Horizons Regional Council website, www.horizons.govt.nz, a Facebook page, www.facebook.com/Horizonsswimspots has been set up so people can post updates on the conditions at their favourite spots and ask questions about water quality

Horizons’ chief executive Michael McCartney hopes people get out there this summer and enjoy what the Region has to offer.

‘’It’s important the public understand their river and that there are great places to swim. When the conditions are right people should go for it. Equally, it’s important for the community to know when or where it’s not wise to use the river.”

We want people to take a look on our website, get chatting on Facebook and ask questions and get to know their rivers, he said.


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