The Okanagan Indian Band is urging special precautions on Okanagan Lake
During the current flooding, private beaches on Okanagan lakes are potentially contaminated with sewage, water runoff, chemicals, and waste from waterfowl, domestic and wild animals.
There may also be unpredictable currents, fast flowing water and submerged hazards that are dangerous.
The First Nations Health Authority recommends:
o Swimmers avoid flooded water and/or swim with caution in waters with high amounts of debris. Debris can present physical hazards and increase risk of entrapment and drowning
o Do Not Swim in water that looks murky, smells unpleasant, or has unusual high
o Avoid swallowing water or putting your head under water if you are unsure about its
o Avoid swimming if you have an open wound or infection.
o Avoid swimming if you are sick from digestive or intestinal problem.
o Chiefs and Councils may wish to post advisories on beaches where they believe it is
unsafe to swim or there has been contamination from sewage systems, storm
The First Nations Health Authority will support local First Nations in recreational water sampling where it is unclear if there has been contamination or if the beach should be posted.
You can find information at www.interiorhealth.ca/YourEnvironment/RecreationalWater/Pages/default.asp