Public beaches in New Milford, Oxford, and Washington are sampled weekly between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Samples are tested for the presence of bacteria that may cause illness. CT DEEP established bacterial standards are used for public beaches to determine acceptable levels.
In line with the standards established by CTDEEP and CTDPH, we recommend closing bathing areas (public beaches) when any of the following occur:
- Rainfall events are measured in 24-hour increments. If one (1) inch of rainfall occurs in a 24-hour period as measured by the Town Parks & Recreation Department, closure for 24 hours is required. If two (2) inches or more are measured during a 24-hour period, a closure for a minimum of 48-hour is required.
- Bathing water bacterial sample results from each sampling station are found to be elevated above acceptable levels for swimming/bathing for two consecutive sampling days.
- A pollution event has occurred, including but not limited to releases of sewage, oil, or other chemicals, or a toxic algal bloom that may pose an unacceptable risk to public health.
Town Parks and Recreation Department are able to reopen a bathing area when any of the following occur:
- More than 24-hour have passed since the end of the most recent rainfall event equal to inch (1) but less than two (2) inches.
- More than 48-hour have passed since the end of the most recent rainfall event equal to or greater than two (2) inches.
- Water sample results after subsequent retesting are within the acceptable criteria for reopening as determined by the Health District.