Swimming water quality and health warnings
Water quality at popular coastal, river and lake recreation sites and shellfish beds in the region are surveyed and monitored by Bay of Plenty Regional Council.
These sites are monitored for faecal contamination (bacterial monitoring) from October to March each year and for toxin-forming algae species (algal bloom monitoring) from October to June each year.
If a recreational water site is found to be significantly contaminated, with risk to public health, Toi Te Ora - Public Health Service informs the public by issuing a health warning and Council erects warning signs (signs are removed once the water quality improves).
If you swim in or drink contaminated water, you risk getting sick.
As a public health precaution, it is routinely recommended that people avoid swimming in rivers, streams and harbour areas for 48 hours after heavy rainfall events.