Christies Beach will soon reopen for all public access, after a second round of samples taken from the area show the water is safe to swim in.
A 200-metre section of sea water near Christie Creek was, as a precaution, temporarily closed for swimming on Monday morning, following an overflow of treated sludge on Sunday night from SA Water’s nearby Christies Beach Wastewater Treatment Plant.
The overflow resulted from an illegal break-in at the treatment facility, which South Australian Police are currently investigating.
SA Water’s Acting Senior Manager of Production and Treatment Dr Daniel Hoefel said crews were able to contain the spill mostly to the creek, however initial test results received yesterday showed slightly elevated levels of contamination at the creek outlet, so the partial closure remained in place.
"These results indicated a small amount of treated sludge likely made its way into the sea, but secondary sampling taken yesterday afternoon has come back clear, meaning the spill has dissipated," Dr Hoefel said.
"We’ve shared these latest results with SA Health, and have been given the go-ahead to remove signage from the beach.
"We will continue to assist police in their investigation of the break-in, and take the opportunity to review security arrangements at our major facilities, to make sure they remain fit for purpose."
Principal Water Quality Adviser from SA Health Dr David Cunliffe said he’s glad the precautionary closure has been lifted.
"A temporary closure of a short section of the beach was implemented as a precaution to protect public health, until we could be certain the water was safe," Dr Cunliffe said.
"The most recent test results have now confirmed the contamination has cleared."
Christies Beach Wastewater Treatment Plant has continued to operate as normal since the incident, treating and recycling wastewater produced from around 160,000 homes and businesses in Adelaide’s southern suburbs.
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