Swimming banned in Terranora Inlet despite normal levels

13th November 2017 3:07 PM
Map showing discharge point and the area possibly affected by increased e-coli levels at Terranora. Map showing discharge point and the area possibly affected by increased e-coli levels at Terranora. Contributed

TWEED residents are still being urged to not use the contaminated Terranora Broadwater areas despite levels returning to normal.

Restrictions will remain in place for at least anther 24 hours after council confirmed effluent discharge is now standard in the Tweed estuary parts of the Terranora Broadwater and Cobaki Broadwater and Terranora Creek down to Boyds Bay Bridge remains in place.

Council's engineering director David Oxenham said testing of the effluent discharge at the weekend confirmed that the levels of thermotolerant (faecal) coliforms in the discharge again were within normal range but warned residents shouldn't use the waterways until further notified. .

"Our staff have worked throughout the weekend to quickly contain this situation,” said Mr Oxenham.

"Currently we are bypassing the final effluent lagoon at the Banora Point Wastewater Treatment Plant and it may take several days before the plant is back to normal operation.”

Last week a large volume of raw wastewater bypassed from the inlet works of the plant and went direct to the lagoon without being treated.

While it was diluted with the treated wastewater in the lagoon, a portion of this diluted wastewater was discharged into the Terranora Inlet at the licensed discharge point at the Navy Base on Dry Dock Road.

"The risk to human and aquatic health within the estuary is very low but we are maintaining the alert for another 24 hours to allow further improvement,” said Mr Oxenham.