Between Memorial Day and Labor Day, Public Health monitors local designated swim beaches to determine if the water quality is safe for swimming and recreation. If there is a problem with algae or E.Coli bacteria in the water, advisory signs will be posted at the lake.
Whether there is an advisory in effect or not, always take precautions such as not swallowing water, exposing cuts or sores to water or entering water that appears scummy. Please read below for a description of our monitoring process.
Current beach information
Below you will find current advisories for lakes that have designated swim beaches monitored by Clark County Public Health. The last samples pulled for the 2018 swim season occurred prior to Labor Day weekend. While Clark County Public Health will no longer routinely sample the water, health concerns may still arise. Please contact us if you see any algae blooms or fecal contamination that may warrant a public health response.
|Designated Swim Beach||Advisories||Comments|
|Battle Ground Lake||
No current advisories.
Last sampled 8/20/18
|Klineline Pond||No current advisories.||
Last sampled 8/20/18
|Vancouver Lake||No current advisories.||
Last sampled 8/30/18
There are no current advisories for other lakes and rivers in Clark County. Be advised that only designated swim beaches* are routinely monitored by Clark County Public Health. Please continue to report public health concerns that you may observe.
*Designated swim beaches are beaches that have swimming areas separated from other recreational water activities such as boating or fishing.
Bacteria water sampling
Harmful bacteria can be present in lakes and occasionally in rivers and streams. Ingesting water contaminated with fecal bacteria can cause fever, diarrhea and vomiting. If you experience these symptoms after water contact, please contact your physician. To reduce your risk of exposure, Public Health recommends showering and hand washing with soap and warm water after contact with water at swim beaches.
Between Memorial and Labor Day, Clark County Public Health collects several water samples from Battle Ground Lake, Klineline Pond and Vancouver Lake to test for E.coli. This is based on the federal Environmental Protection Agency's recommendations for fresh water monitoring. If a single sample has a maximum level above 235 colony forming units (cfu), then Public Health takes action to warn swimmers. Water samples are taken on Mondays with results posted by the following Friday.
Toxic algae monitoring
Algae blooms can pose significant health risks to humans and animals in lakes or other water bodies without currents. Algae blooms are most common in summer but can also occur at any time of year. Toxins produced by blue-green algae may be present during a visible bloom or may persist after a bloom has disappeared. Blooms can also be produced by other algae species that are not harmful.
In the event of a bloom, Public Health staff will take samples of the lake water to determine if toxins are present. Monitoring will continue as needed and signs will be posted at the swim beach to discourage activity in the water.
For more information or for access to the sampling results data please contact us at 564.397.8428 or by email.
Public Health talks Swim Safety
Clark County: What you can do for clean water
CDC: Healthy Swimming
Washington State Department of Health: Swimming Beach Advisories
Washington State Department of Health: Blue-Green Algae
Washington State Department of Ecology: Freshwater Algae Control