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Water Contact Alerts, Water Quality Advisories and Area Closings

Recreational Water and Public Beaches

April 21, 2019 11:24 PM


Current Alerts/Advisories

Water Contact Alerts Currently in Effect: 

A Water Contact Alert is in effect until further notice for Maiden Choice Run along Frederick Rd in Catonsville due to a sanitary sewer overflow.

A Water Contact Alert is in effect until further notice for Powder Mill Run, a tributary of Gwynns Falls in the vicinity of Patterson Avenue and Powder Mill Run Park in Baltimore County.

A Water Contact Alert is in effect until further notice for Herring Run in Parkville due to a sanitary sewer overflow.


Beach Area Closures:


Water Quality Advisories Currently in Effect:

  • The Lake Roland results exceed the Beach Action Value for E. coli, but it is probably not necessary to issue a Water Quality Advisory or immediately re-sample this early in the season.

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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