Coastal swimming ban noticeably shorter: New tool predicts water quality with greater accuracy | near

coastThe Flemish Environment Agency and the Health and Welfare Agency have invested in a model that can predict faster and better bathing water quality on our Belgian coast. Thanks to the tool, bathers no longer have to stay away from the water for several days, as was often the case with old specimens.

The bathing water on our coast is of excellent quality, as was recently shown by the report of the Flemish Environment Agency. In the event of heavy rainfall, flooding can start, causing untreated sewage through ports to contaminate beaches and bathing water.

The new model calculates the spread of pollution. As soon as one of the surplus runs on the coast, the model begins to count. For this purpose, she uses a current and deep model of the North Sea.

In addition, the direction of the tides and winds are taken into account. If standards are expected to be exceeded, the form sends out a warning allowing areas to be temporarily closed to the public until bathing water quality is good again.

Sampling results are only available after 2 days

Flemish Minister of Welfare and Public Health Hilda Krewitz is pleased with the new tool. Until today, samples were taken to measure the quality of water in the sea, the results of which were not known until two days later. Then some areas were closed to the public. To prevent this, we worked on a new predictive model that allows quality to be calculated in advance. This way people can always swim in healthy waters.”

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Flemish Minister of Environment and Tourism Saturn Demir is also optimistic. “In the past, due to flooding from streams, some swimming areas on the coast were sometimes closed for several days at a time. With this new prediction model, we can get an overview of water quality faster and reopen swimming areas faster. So tourists won’t have to To stay out of the water unnecessarily, which was regularly the case with “classic” sampling.

Swimming ban times have been significantly shortened

Due to current sampling, areas are currently closed for at least three days each time a sample is found to be contaminated. Last year, for example, swimming in 27 areas was temporarily discouraged (after a poor sample) for a total of 81 days.

With the new model, each area will only be closed for one day and swimming will only be 27 days. Manual sampling remains necessary anyway, because the model can only predict contamination through the effect of excess. You can find out the quality of the current shower water via qualityzwemwater.be

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Megan Vasquez

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