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Aquatic Testing to Prevent Beach and Recreational Water Illnesses

EMSL Analytical offers water and other environmental testing services to identify microbial and chemical exposure risks to protect the public and workers.

Cinnaminson, NJ – WEBWIRE

During this time of year, millions of people enjoy spending time at the beach. For many, it means taking part in water–related activities, such as swimming. Fortunately, in most circumstances, after spending the day at the beach most people leave with nothing more than great memories.

However, swimming at beaches with pollution in the water or in the sand can make people ill. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that recreational water illnesses, also known as RWIs, are caused by germs or chemicals found in polluted water that people swim in or engage in other activities. The agency states that in the past two decades, there has been a substantial increase in the number of RWI outbreaks.

Some of the sources of this pollution, listed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), include:

  • Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs)
  • Sanitary Sewer Overflows (SSOs)
  • Stormwater
  • Trash and Litter
  • Fertilizers
  • Pesticides
  • Animal Feeding Operations (AFOs)
  • Boat Discharges 

The EPA reports that children, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems are the groups most likely to develop illnesses or infections after coming in contact with polluted water, usually while swimming.

“Beach related illnesses and RWIs are typically spread by swallowing, breathing in mists or aerosols of, or having contact with contaminated water in swimming pools, hot tubs, water parks, water play areas, interactive fountains, lakes, rivers or oceans,” said Jason Dobranic, Ph.D., Vice President of Microbiology and Life Sciences at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “Some conditions can also be caused by chemicals in the water or chemicals that turn into a gas and cause air quality problems at indoor aquatic facilities. To help prevent people from coming in contact with microbial or chemical pollutants, EMSL Analytical offers a comprehensive range of aquatic, environmental and air quality testing services, along with all of the sampling supplies necessary.”

EMSL also recently sponsored an educational video about beach related illnesses that can be seen at:

To learn more about microbial and chemical testing services, please visit, email  or call (800) 220-3675.

About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical is one of the leading testing laboratories with over 45 locations throughout the United States and Canada. EMSL is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider specializing in fast laboratory results for mold, bacteria, Legionella, USP 797, pathogens, asbestos, lead, soot, char & ash from fires, VOC’s, odors, radon, formaldehyde, indoor air quality, microbiology, environmental, industrial hygiene, radiological, food, beverage & consumer products and material testing services for the identification of unknown substances. EMSL services both professionals and the general public. EMSL maintains an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies including, but not limited to A2LA, AIHA LAP, LLC. (AIHA EMLAP, AIHA IHLAP, AIHA ELLAP), NVLAP, CDC ELITE, CPSC, CA ELAP, NY ELAP, TX DOH, NJDEP and multiple other state accrediting agencies. Please visit our website at for a complete listing of accreditations. In addition, EMSL carries a wide range of Sampling Equipment and Investigative Products for environmental professionals.

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