E coli Water Testing

E coli Water Testing

Since 2014 the Village of Lake Isabella has partnered with the Central Michigan District Health Department to conduct weekly testing of sites to monitor E.coli bacteria levels in and around the community during the summer months.  A beach is closed if monitoring conducted by the county health department determines that levels of bacteria exceed the limits established by the Michigan Public Health Code and Rule 323.1062(1) of the Part 4. Water Quality Standards (Promulgated pursuant to Part 31 of the Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act, 1997 PA 451, as amended). A beach is closed if either the single-day or 30-day average bacteria count exceeds the established limit. If a beach is closed due to bacterial contamination, county healthy departments will continue to monitor the water quality at the beach and will permit the beach to re-open when bacteria levels fall back within acceptable levels. It is possible that a beach could be closed for swimming but other recreational activities at the beach may still be available.

Three samples are taken in water generally one foot below the surface in water that is between three and six feet in depth. If the results of three test samples average to less than 300 E. coli per 100 milliliters of water, the risk of recreational water illnesses is minimal. If the test results over a 30 day period average below 130 E. coli per 100 ml of water, the risk of recreational water illnesses is minimal. High levels of E. coli indicate fecal contamination and the possible presence of other harmful bacteria, parasites and viruses in the water. Regardless of beach water test results, safe swimming should always be practiced to prevent recreational water illnesses.  Steps you can take to practice safe swimming include:

  • Avoid getting water in your mouth.
  • Sanitize your hands before eating.
  • Take your kids on bathroom breaks and be sure young children wear clean swim diapers.
  • Do not swim in water that appears murky, smells foul or looks polluted in any way.
  • Avoid swimming immediately after heavy rainfall.
  • Do not feed seagulls or geese.
  • Shower after you swim.

Testing Results (2014-2022)

Beginning in 2021, the weekly samples are reported to the State of Michigan's BeachGuard program. Please visit their site (click here) throughout the summer for weekly reports from the beaches at Essex Park, South Park, and Termino Park.