E. coli forces closure of two beaches in Windsor-Essex this week

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E. coli forces closure of two beaches in Windsor-Essex this week

For the fourth time in as many weeks, the health unit has closed beaches due to high levels of E. coli found in the water.

The E. coli count hit 1,000 at both Sandpoint and West Belle River Beach, according to the latest water test results released Wednesday by the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit.

When beach closures take effect, the health unit will retest the water at those beaches only. According to the WECHU's website, updated results on the water quality at Sandpoint and West Belle River Beach will be available by the end of Friday, 

Sandpoint troubles continue

This month has been tough for frequent visitors of Sandpoint Beach. It was the first beach to be closed in Windsor and Essex County this year after its water was tested on July 16. The following week, that closure remained in effect.

After another test on July 30, Sandpoint Beach was reopened.

This week, it's been closed once again.

First closure for West Belle River Beach

West Belle River Beach has been hit with multiple warnings by the health unit, but this week marks the first time it has been officially closed.

A beach warning is issued when E. coli levels reach between 200 and 999. When these same levels hit or exceed 1000, a closure is issued — forcing the municipality to tape off the beach from public use.

On July 23, bacteria levels at West Belle River Beach hit more than 700. Another warning was issued during the week of July 30.

Warnings issued

Cedar Island Beach and Point Pelee North West Beach have been issued warnings this week, citing bacteria levels of 872 and 603 respectively.

Below is a list of the beaches tested Monday — and released Wednesday — along with their recorded E. coli levels:

- Cedar Beach (Kingsville) — 32

- Cedar Island Beach (Kingsville) — 872

- Colchester Beach (Essex) — 114

- Holiday Beach (Essex) — 194

- Mettawas Beach (Kingsville) — 162

- Point Pelee North West Beach — 603

- Sandpoint Beach (Windsor) — 1000

- Seacliff Park Beach (Leamington) — 68

- West Belle River Beach (Lakeshore) — 1000