State Develops Interactive Website To Track Beach Quality

Website includes access to reports, information about recent research, health risks, and shore-related links

Want to know how clean the water is at the beach you are heading out to this weekend?

Now you can, with the state Department of Environmental Protection's newly enhanced beach quality website at www.njbeaches.org

The coastal water monitoring website includes real-time mapping and data to make it easier for the public to follow water quality testing.

"We are proud to have one of the nation's most comprehensive beach monitoring programs and also proud that New Jersey consistently ranks among the top states for beach openings," DEP Commissioner Bob Martin said this week.  "This new interactive map will provide a user-friendly way for the public to understand water quality at their favorite beaches.""

The DEP has worked with Rutgers University to develop the interactive website and map that will show real-time status of monitored beaches.  The updated www.njbeaches.org website allows the public to easily view and download water quality data, provides alerts at beaches and shows the daily flight path and the chlorophyll data collected during the flights.

This enhanced website is designed to give beachgoers better access to a variety of information about the shore.  The website includes access to a variety of reports, information about recent research, health risks, and shore-related links.

Water quality sampling in the state began two weeks ago.  The results are "outstanding" according to the DEP.

Coastal surveillance flights started on Monday and observers are carefully watching for algae blooms and debris, which might affect water quality.

The DEP spearheads the Coastal Cooperative Monitoring Program, a joint state, federal and local partnership that routinely tests water quality at 217 ocean and estuarine beaches across the state. Last season, New Jersey's beaches were open 99.9 percent of the time.

Ocean and bay beaches were closed a total of 88 times last season out of nearly 63,000 beach days - all monitored beaches multiplied by the total days in the monitoring season, from Memorial Day weekend through the week after Labor Day.
But 76 of the closures were due to precautionary rainfall closure policy at just four beaches surrounding one stormwater outfall in Monmouth County. Only four other ocean beaches were closed, all for precautionary purposes only, according to the DEP.


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