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Eurobodalla Beachwatch Program

We sample and test water from beaches across the Eurobodalla every year from the start of November to the end of March.

During this period, we collect five samples a month from 11 popular beaches. This routine monitoring provides important information on the cleanliness of the water. The data collected can help you to decide when and where to swim.

We generate star ratings (one to four stars) for each swim site based on the number of bacteria (enterococci) in the most recent water sample. The water quality results show the site's suitability for swimming based on this star rating system.

Water sample results

Water quality guidelines

To determine whether water quality is safe for swimming, beaches are assessed in accordance with the National Health and Medical Research Council's Guidelines for Managing Risks in Recreational Waters (NHMRC, 2008). The NHMRC 2008 guidelines advocate enterococci as the single preferred indicator organism for the detection of faecal contamination in recreational waters.

1 star rating 'Good' rating: bacterial levels are safe for bathing according to National Health & Medical Research Council guidelines.

3 star rating 'Fair' rating: bacterial levels indicate an increased risk of illness to bathers, particularly those with lower immune function such as the elderly and young children.

'Poor' rating: bacterial levels indicate a substantially increased risk of illness to bathers.

'Bad' rating: bacterial levels indicate a substantially increased risk of illness to bathers.

The majority of the tested sites consistently complied with these guidelines during summer.

More information

  • Water quality at Surf Beach: Council's Public and Environmental Health Team is investigating water quality results at Surf Beach. To date, Council has not identified a potential source or reason for this water quality issue.
  • Avoid swimming up to three days after rain, and when the water looks murky and unclean. Stormwater washes pollutants from the catchment into waterways, which can impact water quality.
  • All beachgoers can help protect the pristine nature of our beaches and estuaries by collecting and removing litter.
  • We deliver the Beachwatch Program in partnership with the Department of Planning, Housing and Infrastructure.
  • The Department of Planning, Housing and Infrastructure provides Beachwatch Program information, including the State of the Beaches Report.

We can help you

For more information about our Beachwatch Program, please contact our Public and Environmental Health Team: