Post-Hurricane Isaias Sampling Results on the Tar-Pam

The storm caused river levels to rise, but well below flood stage on the Tar. The Pamlico hit minor flood stage briefly Monday evening. River levels will continue to rise into this weekend, but remain below flood stage.

As part of our hurricane response work, we collect water quality samples before and after storm events. We collected pre- and post-storm bacteria samples – reminder that even though the water may look safe (ie it may not be moving too fast and there may not be much debris), storm events are generally not good for water quality because they wash pollution into our rivers and streams. Sample results collected after the storm show high levels of e.coli.

Photo: 3 samples collected from Chicod Creek in Grimesland, top are samples collected afternoon before the storm, bottom are the same sample locations collected Tuesday afternoon after the storm. Glowing blue means hits for e.coli. – the 3 samples collected after the storm show the highest measurable results for e.coli.

The sample post hurricane at Port Terminal failed to meet recreational water quality standards. Those collected at Town Common and Washington Waterfront passed. We will be putting out data as part of Swim Guide tomorrow afternoon – be sure to check results for the most up to date water quality sampling.

– Jill Howell, Pamlico Tar Riverkeeper