DEC Lakes and Ponds Program Manager Oliver Pierson sent along this message about potential water quality issues in lakes in flood affected areas.

Given the flooding and high water levels in rivers and streams around the state and related hazards, failure of wastewater systems and potential failure of residential septic systems in many parts of the state, high water levels in lakes, and the related potential for greater interaction between lake water and shallow ground water around the lake, it does make sense to stay out of lake waters in flood affected areas for the time being, and to also test these waters for E-Coli before entering these waters.

Municipalities or recreation area managers should consider closing municipal beaches in flood-affected areas until flood waters have receded and the lake water can be tested. E – coli Testing info is here: VT Dept of Health E Coli in recreational swimming waters webpage