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Water Contact Alerts, Water Quality Advisories and Area Closings

Recreational Water and Public Beaches

July 17, 2018 6:58 PM


Current Alerts/Advisories

Water Contact Alerts Currently in Effect: 

  • A Water Contact Alert is in effect for Patapsco River Fresh and Tidal water locations in Baltimore County due to sanitary sewage overflows at the Patapsco Sewage Pumping Station, located at 4612 Annapolis Road in Halethorpe, 21227, Frederick Road Pumping Station, located at 1809 Frederick Road in Catonsville, 21228, and 4547 Bonnie Branch Road in Ellicott City (Howard County).

  • A Water Contact Alert is in effect until further notice for Parks Run in Cockeysville due to a sanitary sewer overflow.


Beach Area Closures:


Water Quality Advisories Currently in Effect:

  • A Water Quality Advisory is in effect until further notice for Lake Roland.

  • A Water Quality Advisory for is in effect until further notice for the tidal portion of the Patapsco River in Baltimore County in the vicinity of Southwest Area Park.

Alert/Advisory Procedures

The Baltimore County Department of Health, Environmental Health Services (EHS) closely monitors and samples beach areas for water quality, posts sampling results, and issues beach closure notices, Water Contact Alerts and Water Quality Advisories.

When recreational water conditions exceed standards and sewage contamination is suspected or evident,sampling will occur and the results will be posted online, Water Contact Alerts are issued or public bathing beaches are closed. Contaminated conditions can be produced by storm water run-off from severe storms, sanitary sewage overflows, or marine accidents. After the storms have passed, local wind and tide conditions can result in the intermittent re-intensification of those conditions for extended periods in tidal waters. When water quality parameters are generally elevated or abnormal, but no sewage contamination is present, a Water Quality Advisory will be issued.

Recreational water users are reminded:

  • Be observant for cloudy or discolored water in streams, rivers, or the bay, and of waters that are laden with debris. Water quality may have been negatively impacted.

  • Do not drink stream water.

  • Avoid contact with potentially contaminated water if you have open cuts or bandaged wounds. If accidental contact with contaminated water occurs, wash any damaged skin areas as soon as possible.

  • Minimize hand to mouth contact and be sure to wash your hands thoroughly before eating.

Revised November 17, 2017         


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