Environment Canada says the coloured water is no concern to public health.

Environment Canada says the coloured water is no concern to public health.

Discoloured west beach water caused by runoff

No concern for public health, according to Environment Canada

Reddish-brown water that flowed onto White Rock’s west beach last week has been identified as wash runoff.

Greg St. Louis, White Rock’s director of engineering and municipal operations, said Tuesday that Environment Canada officials “have concluded there’s no concern to public health.”

“They believe someone was washing down some kind of brick pavers.”

The discoloured outflow was spotted the evening of April 22. The water colour returned to normal the following morning.

Efforts to track down the exact source were unsuccessful.

St. Louis said the incident prompted staff to establish “a new and improved process” for city work, to better ensure that contaminants and solid waste are kept out of the storm sewers.

Environment officials have also encouraged a campaign to educate the public on the fact that anything that goes into that system ultimately goes into fish habitat.

Anyone planning to power wash their driveway, for example, should give a thorough sweep beforehand and put what’s collected into the trash, St. Louis said.

 

“A high-pressure wash could break off pieces of brick pavers and send all that sediment” into the storm sewer, he said.