Island Health reports Stowel Lake is once again safe for swimmers, microbiologically speaking.
Samples taken by the health authority on Aug. 24 and posted this week showed E. Coli bacteria levels back within an acceptable threshold at 10 per 100 ML; a sample taken Aug. 16 showed an abnormally high 495 per 100 ML. Current sampling means Stowel Lake returns to the “green” rating, with no concerning water quality issues.
The “red” warning is triggered when results exceed 400 per 100 mL, or when the most recent five samples show greater than 200. Island Health notes there is significant risk for illness when bacteria levels are this high.
Samples are generally taken starting in May and continuing through late summer, when it is most likely swimmers and other lake users would encounter bacteria that flourish in warmer months.