‘We wouldn’t swim in the water here’: Mass. beaches closed due to excessive bacteria

‘We wouldn’t swim in the water here’: Mass. beaches closed due to excessive bacteria

Just a week after more than 80 state beaches opened for the season, 18 are now closed–most due to excessive bacteria.

When you walk up to Lynn Shore Beach, first you can smell it in the air—and then you can see the signs.

This beach is closed due to high levels of bacteria. This is among more than a dozen already shut down to swimmers, just barely into the season.

The state’s Department of Public Health announced it closed 18 beaches for swimming. The state does weekly water quality testing at its waterfronts beginning the week before Memorial Day through Labor Day.

The bacterial levels were excessively high at 16 beaches. The state’s water quality dashboard said two others were closed for swimming for other reasons.

There are several reasons why beaches can be closed off for swimmers, such as elevated bacteria from a rainstorm, algae blooms, and waste from animals.

Swimming in unsafe waters can result in gastrointestinal and respiratory health issues, causing illness. People who walk in the area tell Boston 25 News a nearby outflow pipe causes Lynn Shore Beach to be closed often.

“We will go down there sometimes but we wouldn’t swim in the water here, but we enjoy walking along it—it usually has red flags,” said Sarah Haines of Swampscott.

“It’s unfortunate, they got to figure it out,” said Tom Haines of Swampscott. “We live in a great state with beautiful beaches so we just travel further north.”

The beaches will reopen for swimming when bacteria levels return to acceptable ranges. The state updates its water quality dashboard twice a day.

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