When the sun is shining, the first port of call is finding the nearest beach. But, your nearest beach may not always be the best option, as the Environmental Protection Agency has pointed out.
New statistics released this week by the EPAshows that there are seven beaches all over Ireland which have been deemed unsafe.
Around 92% of Ireland's beaches are of a "sufficient" standard with just over 70% said to be excellent.
Of the seven beaches which were found to be of "poor" standard, five are in the capital.
The EPA explains that:
"The fact that any bathing water has been classified as ‘Poor’ means that there is a risk of periodic microbiological pollution which could potentially cause illness such as skin rashes or gastric upset.
"Under the Bathing Water Regulations, local authorities are required to put in place notifications for the entire bathing season advising the public against bathing. This could include a bathing prohibition if a serious pollution incident occurs."
The five Dublin beaches in question are:
- Sandymount Strand, Dublin
- Merrion Strand, Dublin
- Loughshinny, Dublin
- Portrane, Dublin
- Rush South, Dublin
Peter Webster, EPA Senior Scientific Officer said,
“Ireland has many beautiful beaches and some inland bathing waters with excellent water quality. The report covers the 142 EU identified bathing waters. It also provides details of over 80 other waters where bathing occurs and which are monitored by local authorities.
"While these 80 waters are not covered by the Regulations they are monitored by the local authorities because bathing or recreational activities are known to take place there and it is important to let the public know about their water quality. We would like to see many of them in the national monitoring programme in the future.”
The summary report Bathing Waters in Ireland 2017 and map of the quality of Ireland’s Bathing water sites are available on the EPA website.