Streaming issues? Report here
Sara-Jayne King Sara-Jayne King
Weekend Breakfast with Sara-Jayne King
06:00 - 10:00
volume_up
volume_mute

Up Next: Just the Hits with Abongile Nzelenzele
See full line-up
Weekend Breakfast with Sara-Jayne King
06:00 - 10:00
Home
arrow_forward
Local

E.Coli bacteria in Cape Town rivers and vleis at very high levels - Dr Winter

30 October 2020 10:16 AM
Tags:
Water
Water Pollution
E.coli
Milnerton Lagoon

Levels of E.coli are 500cfu which are considered unacceptable by the government's water quality guidelines for recreational use.

Refilwe Moloto speaks to Dr Kevin Winter of Penisnusla Paddlers and UCT's Future Water Institute about the disturbing readings from water samples recently collected from the Milnerton Lagoon on World Rivers Day in September.

Winter is part of a group Peninsula Paddle formed 11 years ago that took on the challenge of trying to paddle from Muizenberg Beach to Milnerton Lagoon. They have grown over the years from just 4 people to some years having close to 100 paddlers on the trip.

Recently under Covid-19 conditions, they could only do the trip with a small group. Collecting water samples along the way has caused some concerns especially the high levels of E.Coli present in Cape Town's waterways.

They collected the water sample quite close to the mouth of the lagoon as that is where the paddle had ended, at the Milnerton Canoe Club, so the levels could very well be higher further upstream the reading which came back was 2419 CFU (colony forming units), which is extremely high, and many labs stop counting above these levels.

E.Coli is one measure of the state of contamination in the water.

Dr Kevin Winter, Peninsula Paddlers

E.Coli is bacteria.

While our systems do contain many healthy bacteria that are important to our body's functioning, ingesting large amounts of E.Coli from waterways means taking in large amounts of pathogens along with that, he explains.

The higher the count of E.Coli in that water, the more likely you are to find pathogens or germs that could cause harm to individuals' health if you ingest that water.

Dr Kevin Winter, Peninsula Paddlers

What is an acceptable level of E.Coli in our recreational waterways?

Winter says that is tricky as it is not fully understood what those levels are.

But there is a general South African standard of 1000 counts of bacteria per 100 milliliters of water called CFUs.

Dr Kevin Winter, Peninsula Paddlers

The paddlers took some 14 samples of water across various rivers and vleis along their journey.

In almost all of these places...they were well over that 1000 - in fact the laboratory has measured up to 2,419 counts - and essentially the machines stopped counting because it is well over the general limit.

Dr Kevin Winter, Peninsula Paddlers

Note, this does not impact Cape Town's drinking water system or supply.

How can we help?

Listen to Dr Winter below suggesting various solutions to the problem:


30 October 2020 10:16 AM
Tags:
Water
Water Pollution
E.coli
Milnerton Lagoon

More from Local

Person reading book or novel - lifestyle literature and stories 123rf

John Maytham's Weekly Book Review: 27 November 2020

27 November 2020 6:41 PM

Afternoon Drive host John Maytham reviews some of the books that he has read this week.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward

tashas-inspired-book

Founder of popular restaurant chain Tashas releases new coffee table cookbook

27 November 2020 4:25 PM

"I never imagined that Tashas would be what it is today", says founder Natasha Sideris.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward

190306coligny

[JUST IN] Supreme Court of Appeal overturns convictions of duo in Coligny murder

27 November 2020 1:45 PM

Two men convicted of the murder of a 16-year-old boy in Coligny have had their convictions overturned by the Supreme Court of Appeal.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward

Dudu Myeni

Judge Zondo orders police to investigate Dudu Myeni

27 November 2020 1:15 PM

The Deputy Chief Justice is saying police must charge her if she broke the law, says EWN reporter Nthakoana Ngatane.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward

Ford Family 3

"Backdoor dealings" in Ford Kuga settlement, claims Reshall Jimmy's sister

27 November 2020 1:13 PM

The sister of Ford Kuga fire victim Reshall Jimmy claims there were some underhanded tactics involved in her brother's case.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward

wedding-ring-band-vows-marriage-couple-matrimony-anniversary-123rf

Cape Town couple celebrate 70 years of marriage and share secret to wedded bliss

27 November 2020 10:45 AM

Dora Freeman (93), and Benjamin George Freeman (92) celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary this week.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward

Covid-19-safety-protocols-temperature-check-digital-thermometer-mask-black-woman

Here's a look at where Covid-19 cases and deaths have risen in the Cape metro

27 November 2020 10:01 AM

There's been a 73% increase in new Covid-19 cases and a 28% increase in new Covid-19 deaths over the last seven days in the Cape metropole.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward

ORTAMBO_0293

Motion of no confidence in President Ramaphosa: 'It’s about optics'

27 November 2020 9:24 AM

The African Transformation Movement's move against Ramaphosa is posturing ahead of the election in 2021, says Sanusha Naidoo.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward

ecommercejpg

Three questions to ask yourself before being sucked into the Black Friday frenzy

26 November 2020 7:45 PM

There's a danger of making bad choices when logic goes out of the window. Stuff magazine's Toby Shapshak has some pointers.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward

platteklip-robert-van-zyl

Capetonian (70) completes his 1000th climb up Table Mountain’s Platteklip Gorge

26 November 2020 2:13 PM

A 70-year-old Cape Town father, Robert “Roy” van Zyl, finished his 1000th climb up Table Mountain in under an hour.

Share this:
Read More arrow_forward