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Source: Auckland Council

Back in the middle of October, Auckland Council and Watercare placed a temporary health warning at Browns Bay beach.

During routine sampling as part of the council group’s joint water quality improvement initiative, the Safe Networks programme identified elevated levels of E.coli discharging from a stormwater outlet. As a result, a black alert to indicate a wastewater overflow was placed over Browns Bay beach on the Safeswim website.

Since that discovery, Safe Networks has closely investigated the area. Dye testing and CCTV investigations have found a broken public wastewater pipe that runs under Oban Road and a collapsed private wastewater pipe in the area. Both issues have allowed wastewater to enter the stormwater network and discharge at the affected outlet on Browns Bay beach.

“Contractors are working to repair the affected pipes to improve the water quality at Browns Bay,” says Anin Nama, Watercare network efficiency manager.

“We are working with private property owners to undertake repair works”.

While Watercare is fixing the issue, the beach is still considered high risk and is not recommended for swimming.

“We are closely monitoring the water quality and will notify everyone as soon as our sampling confirms the beach’s water quality is low-risk,” says Nick Vigar, Auckland Council’s Safeswim programme manager.

The Safeswim website will continue to show a black pin until the remedial work is complete which could take a number of weeks.

Don’t take the risk, always visit to check the conditions before swimming.