How often does the health department test local lakes?

During summer vacation, a day at the lake is the best way to beat the heat for this group of girls from Soule Road Middle School in Liverpool. However Marissa Roux says her parents were a little wary.

"My mom asked us where we were going because I guess this beach had an E-coli problem and there was a warning for it," says Roux.

A few weeks ago, Onondaga County Health officials closed Jamesville Beach after they found high levels of e-coli bacteria in the water, but the next day, the levels were back to normal.

Kevin Zimmerman is the Director of Environmental Health for the Onondaga County Health Department.

"People always ask that question. Why can a beach have high bacteria levels one day and not the next? Keep in mind, our results are usually 24 hours old when we announce them but what happens is the water is constantly moving," says Zimmerman.

The e-coli isn't keeping Amyjo Chiles away. She loves to go to Jamesville Beach with her kids, but she thinks other parents may feel differently.

"We're out here everyday and because of the e-coli scare people aren't coming anymore. You see out here it's not as packed. People don't trust what's going on," says Chiles.

The Onondaga County Health Department tests for e-coli once a month, but blue green algae is another story. Health officials won't test for it unless they get a report.

"Blue green algae basically looks like green paint," says Zimmerman.

The Health Department wants you to remain vigilant, but at the end of a hot day, don't be afraid to dive in.

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