e. coli

Paul-W, Flickr

Beach access is now being permitted in some locations after heavy rains on Saturday led to a sewage spill in the Boardman River.

 

After E. coli tests were done yesterday, the Grand Traverse County Health Department says Clinch Park and Bryant Park Beaches are safe for full body contact.

 

Slightly higher E. coli levels allow only for partial body contact at Sunset Park Beach.  This includes activities such as wading, fishing and paddling.

Two floods, two weeks and too much water

Jun 11, 2020
Dan Wanschura

The second extreme rain event in two weeks has led to yet another sewage spill in the Boardman River in Traverse City.

 

A public health advisory has gone into effect, and the Grand Traverse County Health Department has advised the public to stay out of the water at beaches including Clinch Park, Sunset Park, Bryant Park and the Grand Traverse Senior Center. 

 

Dan Wanschura

The public health advisory for Grand Traverse County has been lifted today.

 

E. coli levels in the Boardman River have now returned to a safe level for full body contact with the water.

 

After heavy rains caused 54,000 gallons of sewage to leak from a manhole cover into the Boardman River last Thursday, several beaches and locations along the Boardman River were closed.  All of those locations are open and safe for use again.

 

Michigan likely needs realtor buy-in to pass a septic code

Feb 28, 2020
A man in jeans and a lightly-colored coat stands on a front porch dusted with snow.
Mike Krebs / Traverse City Record-Eagle

Realtors and interest groups opposed to regulation are shaping septic system policies in Michigan's state and local politics.

Realtors don't like the idea of inspections tied to home sales. Anti-regulation lawmakers don't like the alternatives.

Dan Wanschura / Interlochen Public Radio

Grand Traverse and Benzie/Leelanau Health Departments have lifted advisories for three Traverse City beaches and Suttons Bay Marina after results today showed lower E.coli levels.

Traverse City Senior Center, Clinch Park and Traverse City State Park are now cleared for swimming.

On Thursday, the Health Departments announced the advisories, saying the water levels in the areas were at levels 2 and 3. At level 2, the departments say beachgoers should only go waist-deep in the water and at a level 3 advisory they advise avoiding the water entirely.

Dan Wanschura / Interlochen Public Radio

Several beaches in northern Michigan are under advisories for E. coli contamination.

Beaches at Clinch Park, Traverse City State Park and Suttons Bay Marina are under level 2 advisories. That means beachgoers should avoid contact with the water above the waist.

The Traverse Senior Center Beach is under a level 3 advisory, meaning visitors should avoid all contact with the water.

Environmental Health Director for the Grand Traverse County Health Department Daniel Thorell says that more testing will be done Friday morning.

When you think about water pollution, you might think about massive sewer overflows, factory pollution or agricultural runoff. But there’s another source of water pollution that might be in your backyard: septic systems that have failed.

They pollute lakes and streams around the state – and in fact, around the country.

Sean Hammond, deputy policy director for the Michigan Environmental Council, is calling for better rules for septic systems and inspections.

“We are the only state in the country to not have a statewide septic code,” Hammond said.