Experts weigh in on water quality after rainfall

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH)– When it rains, we see more beach closures around the state.

Kendall Barbery, the Green Infrastructure Program Manager for the Connecticut Fund for the Environment, told News 8, “Part of this is because of storm water run off and issues like combine sewer overflows.”

Barbery said where there are combined sewer systems even raw sewage can end up in the Long Island Sound. When pipes fill up too quickly, the water overflows into the waterways.

“When the rain falls on the ground and has no where to go, it runs off the surface and then picks up everything we’ve left behind. Dirt, oil, grease, pet waste and everything in between,” said Barbery.

She told News 8 when there’s bacteria in the water it can cause health problems.

Barbery added, “Some people could develop things like an upset stomach, pink eye these are different symptoms of exposure to fecal coliform bacteria.”

beach2 Experts weigh in on water quality after rainfall
(Photo: Noelle Gardner/WTNH)

Some West Haven residents told News 8 public works and volunteer groups pick up trash in the city so it doesn’t end up in the water.

Nick Ruickoldt said, “Anything that looks like it shouldn’t be here and isn’t natural we make sure that we get this place looking the best that it can be.”

Barbery said it is important to do your part.

“Pick up pet waste to help to reduce the amount of bacteria pollution that’s going to be in storm water run off,” said Barbery. “If everybody put their effort into keeping the beaches clean, I think it makes a great deal of progress for everybody,” added Ruickoldt.

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