MAMARONECK, N.Y. -- A local environmental organization has raised concerns over frequent beach closures.
Save the Sound, an organization dedicated to the preservation and upkeep of the Long Island Sound, posted an article on its blog on July 29 naming bacteria as the cause of the closures.
In the post, Tom Andersen, N.Y. program and communications coordinator for Save the Sound, writes, "Pre-emptive beach closings have been routine for almost three decades. It was unacceptable in 1985 and it’s more so now."
The organization works to call attention to problems like these through their Sound Swim Alerts and by talking directly with local governments.
"We urge all Westchester residents to contact their local elected officials and let them know that fixing the sewers and cleaning up the beaches should be a priority," the post says.
While it seems Mamaroneck and Larchmont beaches are among the only ones that close, Westchester County tests 21 different beaches for water quality.
"The first thing to keep in mind is that the county has been testing the water for decades, so it has the data to show that when it rains, the bacteria rise to unsafe levels at the beaches in question, but do not at the others," the post reads.
According to the article, the closures occur when it rains at least half an inch. If it rains more than an inch, they will close for two days.
Harbor Island Park, Beach Point Club, Mamaroneck Beach and Yacht Club, Shore Acres and Orienta Beach Club, Hudson Park, Echo Bay Club, Davenport Club, and Greentree Club in New Rochelle; and Coveleigh Club in Rye are among the beaches that close under these conditions.
The Westchester County Department of Health began closing the beaches in 1985 after it was discovered stormwater was carrying pathogens through the Mamaroneck watershed into Mamaroneck Harbor.
For more information, read the post here .
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