High levels of E. coli found in local marina

Posted at 7:12 PM, Jul 01, 2015
and last updated 2015-07-02 08:50:44-04

E. coli bacteria was found in one of three water samples taken last week by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality at the Pier 36 Marina in Lake Belton. According to Ronnie Bruggman with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the sample tested at least six times the state standard. 

The TCEQ took samples after several complaints about the condition of the water at the pier. Bruggman said there were comments made about sewage, trash, and a fuel spill. 

The water quality state standard is 400 parts per million, according to Bruggman. One of the test results came back at 2,400 parts per million, six times the state standard.

Bruggman says the high levels could be because of a sewer leak that was repaired just before those samples were taken. 

Because the levels came back so high, one part of the marina at Pier 36 is closed. Marina management has been asked to put up signs asking patrons to not swim until the area has been cleared of E. coli.

"We want to keep the public safe. With the Fourth of July coming as it is, and unfortunately the floodwaters, there are very few ramps available," said Bruggman. "We want the public to be out there and be safe."

Bruggman said the water is probably safe as of Wednesday, but in order to be sure, more samples were taken Wednesday afternoon. Bruggman said they should have the results within 48 hours.