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FOSR’s 2020 Summer E. coli Results through 09.02.2020

“IF IT’S BROWN TURN AROUND”.

Yesterday, Wednesday, September 02, 2020, the South Fork of the Shenandoah River was transporting silt, sediment, debris, garbage, logs, and high levels of bacteria.  After the North Fork and South Fork combined making the Main-stem of the Shenandoah River, the lower bacteria levels and less turbid waters in the North Fork helped to dilute the bacteria levels coming from the South Fork.

Previously in Virginia, if a single freshwater grab sample contained E. coli bacteria levels that exceeded 235 CFUs then the water would have been considered unsafe for primary recreational contact. Under the current Virginia Code for both the State Water Control Board and VA Dept. of Health, there is no longer any agency responsible to inform the public of potential exposure to elevated E. coli levels in the freshwater streams and rivers in Virginia!  These are the E. coli results for the water samples collected yesterday, Wednesday, September 02, 2020.

FOSR 2020 Summer Quantitative E. coli Concentration Results through 09.02.2020

                                       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FOSR’s 2020 Summer E. coli Results through 08.25.2020

Measurable rain events have been occurring in the southern region of the Shenandoah River watershed, which includes the North River, South River, and Middle River that are the headwaters of the South Fork of the Shenandoah River.  One of the effects of these storms has been elevated E. coli levels in the South Fork and Main-stem of the Shenandoah.

These are the E. coli results for the water samples that were collected yesterday, Tuesday, August 25, 2020.

FOSR 2020 Summer Quantitative E. coli Concentration Results through 08.25.2020

River height and E. coli concentrations at site FWIH, South Fork of the Shenandoah River at the Bentonville public boat ramp off Indian Hollow Road

When its brown, turn around!

The effect of the rains from the southern region of the watershed is traveling downstream.  Yesterday, the South Fork and Main-stem of the Shenandoah River was still running high and muddy/discolored.  The      E. coli levels at all five of the sites tested on the South Fork and the five sites tested on the Main-stem, including Manassas Run, exceeded the previous instantaneous Virginia water quality standard threshold of 235 E. Coli CFUs per 100ml of sample for primary recreational contact.

FOSR 2020 Summer Quantitative E. coli Concentration Results through 08.18.2020

 

 

 

FOSR’s 2020 Summer E. coli Results through 08.12.2020

These are the E. coli results for the water samples that were collected yesterday, Wednesday, August 12, 2020.

FOSR 2020 Summer Quantitative E. coli Concentration Results through 08.12.2020

At the following sites the E. Coli level exceeded the previous instantaneous Virginia water quality standard threshold of 235 E. Coli CFUs per 100ml of sample for primary recreational contact:

  • FW36, Manassas Run upstream of the confluence with the Shenandoah River at Morgan Ford low water bridge in Warren County 1119.9 MPN E. coli CFU per 100mL/sample

 

The effect of the heavy rains that occurred in Augusta and Rockingham counties last week can still be seen in the South Fork in Luray and Warren Counties and the Main-stem of the Shenandoah River in Clarke County and beyond.

Low Water levels

For the third week in a row, a water sample was not collected at site FW35, Shenandoah River along the bank of the public boat launch at Morgans Ford low water bridge, because the decreased water level has caused the bank to migrate out towards mid-river.

 

 

 

FOSR’s 2020 Summer E. coli Results through 07.30.2020

These are the E. coli results for the water samples that were collected yesterday, Thursday, July 30, 2020.

FOSR 2020 Summer Quantitative E. coli Concentration Results through 07.30.2020

At the following sites the E. Coli level exceeded the previous instantaneous Virginia water quality standard threshold of 235 E. Coli CFUs per 100ml of sample for primary recreational contact:

  • 313.0 MPN E. coli – FCOC, Opequon Creek off of Neill Road in Clarke County
  • 920.8 MPN E. coli – FW36, Manassas Run upstream of the confluence with the Shenandoah River at Morgan Ford low water bridge in Warren County

 

South Fork of the Shenandoah River @ Newport Public Boat Ramp

VA DWR cracking down on misuse of river public access sites

Most of the river public access sites for the launching of watercraft and fishing are either owned or co-managed by VA DWR (Formally VA DGIF). Because of some people’s lack of respect for these areas, VA DWR is now cracking down on misuse of these sites. When collecting the water samples for the FOSR’s summer E. coli testing program yesterday I saw new signage and even the use of a large Solar Traffic Message Board at Castlemans Ferry/ Route 7 public access site in Clarke County alerting visitors to the regulated designated usage of these sites.

IMG_4593

 

FOSR’s 2020 Summer E. coli Results through 07.15.2020

These are the E. coli results for the water samples that were collected yesterday, Wednesday, July 15, 2020.

FOSR 2020 Summer Quantitative E. coli Concentration Results through 07.15.2020

Overall the sites located on the river had low E. coli levels.  At the following site the E. Coli level exceeded the previous instantaneous Virginia water quality standard threshold of 235 E. Coli CFUs per 100ml of sample for primary recreational contact:

  • FW 36 360.9 MPN E. coli  Manassas Run, upstream of the confluence with the Shenandoah River at Morgan Ford low water bridge in Warren County

In a freshwater system, these data represent a snapshot of the water quality on the date, time, and under the conditions that the water sample was collected.

FOSR’s 2020 Summer E. coli Results through 07.08.2020

To get relief from the heat, people are enjoying the refreshing waters of the Shenandoah River. These are the E. coli levels of the water samples that were collected yesterday, Wednesday, July 8. If the conditions remain relatively the same as when these water samples were collected, these results may provide a baseline for determining potential health risks from exposure to harmful bacteria when recreating in the river.

FOSR 2020 Summer Quantitative E. coli Concentration Results through 07.08.2020

FOSR’s 2020 Summer E. coli Results through 06.24.2020

These are the E. coli results for the water samples that were collected yesterday, Wednesday, June 24, 2020.

FOSR 2020 Summer Quantitative E. coli Concentration Results through 06.24.2020

At the following sites, the E. Coli levels were in exceedance of the previous Virginia Water Quality Standard for primary contact recreational use for a single sample maximum of 235 E. coli colony forming units (CFUs) per 100 ml.

  • 1553.1 MPN E. coli – Manassas Run upstream of the confluence with the Shenandoah River at Morgan Ford low water bridge in Warren County
  • 579.4 MPN E. coli – Opequon Creek at Neill Road ford

In a freshwater system, these data represent a snapshot of the water quality on the date, time, and under the conditions that the water sample was collected.

 
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