POMEROY, Wash. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Walla Walla District temporarily closed the Illia Dunes beach and adjacent shallow waters today after routine water testing there showed elevated levels of fecal bacteria.
Additional water samples will be taken Monday to be tested again for fecal coliforms that pose a potential hazard to human health. The beach will remain closed until tests show that fecal bacteria levels do not exceed state and federal levels considered safe for people. Boating and fishing continues to be allowed in nearby areas. Fish caught in waters near the swim beach should be thoroughly cleaned and fully cooked before eating.
As a precaution, warning signs have been posted at the Illia Dunes.
“The Corps routinely samples water at swim beaches,” said Darren Opp, assistant natural resources manager at the Corps’ office in Clarkston, Wash. “We’ll reopen the swim beach when water-quality testing tells us it’s safe again for people.”
For additional information, call the Corps' Lower Granite Natural Resources Management Office in Clarkston, Wash., at 509-751-0240.
Release no. 14-060