Water quality all clear for Viking Bay as pollution warning removed

Viking Bay Photo Peter Brown

Water quality at Viking Bay in Broadstairs has the all clear today (August 4) following three days of being flagged as a pollution risk by the Environment Agency.

The Environment Agency makes daily pollution risk forecasts and will issue the warning against bathing in the sea when water quality is forecast to reduce. This can be based on factors such as heavy rainfall or strong winds.

A warning against bathing was initially issued on August 1 and then again for the following two days.

Contamination can come from a range of sources including surface water outfall, run off from roofs, roads, driveways and pavements and other debris.

Rain, tide, wind, sunlight and seasonality can affect the levels of bacteria that get washed into the sea from livestock, sewage and urban drainage via rivers and streams and how they disperse.

Today the water has the all clear.


  1. The problem is that many sewage-related pathogens persist for weeks, sometimes months. And n the case of Salmonella typhi. Several years.

    It is noteworthy that Southern Water and/or the Environment Agency merely test for E coli. Which, being a good indicator of faecal matter, on ly survives for a week in water.

    Of course, longshore drift means the pathogen rich sewage will wash up on nother bathing spots, not normally tested at all.

    There is no mention of the drugs both prescription and “recreational” also I note that water cos do not routinely test for PFAs (forever chemicals).

    Nowe is the time to put a stop to water co criminality.

  2. Call me “old, sad and cynical” if you like but when I read this “water quality all clear” headline ,I immediately thought “Says who?”
    And wondered how the assessment is made, where, and how detailed the investigation might be.
    I recall the good old days when we were told that Thanet’s sands were pristine pure “Blue Flag ” beaches and I felt surprised but a bit proud.
    They couldn’t have been pristine pure!!! This problem is years old.
    They just used different ways of measuring the level of pollution. And the local printed newspapers just churned out what they were told to make us feel good.

  3. i agree with mr kerton , this type of contamination does not clear overnight . i know they are panicking with only a few weeks of the season left, but peoples lives and health takes priority , we are not being told the long term risk of ingesting neat sewage whilst being in the water ?

  4. No telling if it is clear or not – on the day/time tested yes for sure – the amount of rain we had today 5th SW will release more from the overflow so it will be back today.

  5. “Contamination can come from a range of sources including surface water outfall, run off from roofs, roads, driveways and pavements and other debris”
    But not ‘SOUTHERN WATER’ hahaha
    This company needs one big kick in the nuts – why won’t it happen? High ranking Tory boys have lots of family & friends as large share holders – any other European countries Government would have taken it over years back if it had happened to them.
    Lots of well designed large filtration soakaways could easily rectify this to stop it entering the sewage systems – large investment is needed or this problem is here to stay.

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