Swimmers regard warning signs as a load of sewage

TARYN UTIGER
Last updated 05:00 20/02/2014
Daniel Flynn
ROBERT CHARLES/ Fairfax NZ

SIGNS OF DISDAIN: Daniel Flynn, 21, isn't worried about council signs advising not to swim at Waiwhakaiho Beach.

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The "don't swim" signs are up at the Waiwhakaiho River mouth but the council last night could not say why.

Signs warning swimmers to keep clear of the beach because of a sewage discharge have appeared at the entrance to the Waiwhakaiho beach within the last 10 days.

The signs, labelled "Warning" and "Health Warning" tell people to keep clear, to not swim in the water and that eating shellfish from the area may make you ill.

Late yesterday afternoon the Taranaki Daily News asked the council why its warning signs had been put up.

New Plymouth District Council water and waste manager Mark Hall said he had tried to find out more about the signs but the contractors were not available to answer his questions.

"I'll be able to tell you more tomorrow," he said.

"Obviously they have been put there for a reason."

The council's website had no information on the warnings.

Down at the river mouth yesterday Taranaki swimmers were ignoring the warning signs in favour of cooling off in the 26 degree heat.

Daniel Flynn, 21, said the signs had appeared by the beach fence about a week ago but he had still slipped into the ocean for a dip.

Many other people were also swimming at the beach despite the warning signs, he said.

"I'm not concerned. The water still seems the same. There's more signs like this further up the river though," he said.

No signs were out at Fitzroy or East End beaches.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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