Strike suspends water tests for Toronto islands

City temporarily stops E.coli testing at four isle beaches

By Kris Scheuer
It’s swim at your own risk on the Toronto Islands at all four designated beaches at Hanlan’s Point, Gibraltar Point, Centre Island and Ward’s Island. Interestingly, Hanlan’s Point is a nude beach so for swimmers going without a bathing suit during the strike keep in mind there’s no city testing for E.coli levels in the water at this time.
Normally, the city does daily water tests at eleven designated city beaches including these four on the islands. But due to the strike that began June 22, water testing was suspended.
That is still the case on July 4, day 13 of the strike for the four island beaches plus two on the mainland at in the city’s east end at Rouge Beach, Marie Curtis Park East.
This doesn’t necessarily mean the beaches are polluted. In fact all four island beaches normally flap a Blue Flag, which is an international rating with 27 strict criteria. It’s not all bad news for those wanting to take a cool dip during the strike.
The city’s resumed twice weekly testing at five beaches but none on the islands. The beaches being tested are at Sunnyside, Cherry, Woodbine, Kew-Balmy and Bluffer’s Park.
For the latest water results check my story posted today here.
And for regular updates go to the city’s site at http://www.toronto.ca/beach/swimmingconditions/index.htm.

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