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Water advisory posted for Wailea

The Maui News

The water quality off Wailea Beach exceeded the acceptable levels of enterococci, which could signal the presence of harmful microorganisms in the ocean, the Department of Health announced Wednesday.

The levels of enterococci were 384 per 100 milliliters of water; the safety threshold is 130 per 100 milliliters, the Health Department said.

The higher levels of enterococci indicates the presence of harmful bacteria, viruses, protozoa and parasites, the Health Department said.

Swimming at beaches with pollution in the water may produce illness.

Children, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems are most likely to develop illnesses or infections after coming into contact with polluted water, usually while swimming.

Fortunately, while swimming-related illnesses can be unpleasant, they usually are not serious, require little or no treatment and have no long-term effects, the Health Department said.

The most common illness associated with swimming in water polluted by fecal pathogens is gastroenteritis, which may cause nausea, vomiting, stomachache, diarrhea, headache and fever. Other minor illnesses associated with swimming include ear, eye, nose and throat infections.

The advisory will remain posted until water samples dip below the 130 threshold.

The higher level of enterococci were detected during routine beach monitoring by the department’s Clean Water Branch.

For more information, go to eha-cloud.doh.hawaii.gov/cwb/#!/viewer?eventId=1065 and www.epa.gov/beaches/learn-human-health-beach.