September 22, 2019 at 5:00 PM
Update on the Yuba River Middle Fork, and it’s all good news…. THE NO-SWIM ADVISORY IS NOW LIFTED!
How good is the news? These photos were captured today. Quite a contrast photos from yesterday that we posted this morning.
The Yuba County Environmental Health Team just returned from their survey of the Middle Fork that began down toward Missouri Bar and then continued back up to the Colgate Power Plant. The yellowish sediment that appeared in the water was nowhere to be found today.
The team checked on possible sources of the original murkiness. They spoke to someone who indicated there may have been a small mining operation that caused sediment to be stirred up, creating the discoloration of that stretch of the Yuba River Middle Fork. It looked very much like what was happening on the Yuba River South Fork in Nevada County this past week, but the duration was very, very short.
The “All Clear” has been sounded for the Middle Fork. (A No-Swim Advisory remains in effect for the Yuba River South Fork in Nevada County, from the Town of Washington to, and including, Englebright Lake).
Please know the initial No-Swim Advisory was issued out of an abundance of caution. We’re happy to see our river remains clear.
MARYSVILLE, CA September 22, 2019 – Yuba County health officials have issued a precautionary “No-Swim Advisory” for specific areas of the Middle Fork of the Yuba River downstream from Bullards Bar Reservoir, after a yellowish sediment discoloration of the water was noted.
Swimming restrictions are now in place for the Rice’s Crossing water access, Missouri Bar, and Lower Missouri Bar.
The murky yellowish water conditions are similar to those discovered this week along the South Fork of the Yuba River in Nevada County. In that instance, E. coli levels were found to be double the safe recommended levels by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) .
Because of the similarities with the river discoloration in Nevada County, Yuba County officials say it is important to take steps immediately to protect public health.
The discoloration on the Middle Fork in Yuba County was first observed late Saturday by Yuba Water Agency workers at the Colgate Power Plant, and the details were then relayed to the Yuba County Office of Emergency Services. A Yuba County Environment Health team is collecting water samples this morning for testing purposes to determine whether the water poses a health risk.
Currently, the water being released from Bullards Bar Dam, located upstream from the power plant, is running clear and shows no signed of the discoloration.
Yuba County OES is working closely with Nevada County officials. The Army Corps of Engineers is posting the “No-Swim Advisory” notices, and OES officials said other state and federal agencies have been notified, as well.
High levels of E. coli are toxic to humans and animals. The No-Swim Advisory includes swimming, ingesting, bathing and recreational activities.
Updated information will be posted at www.BePreparedYuba.org as it becomes available.