State recreational water quality officials Tuesday issued a precautionary advisory to warn the public against swimming and waterplay near and in an area of the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway in Surf City.
The warning pertains to waters between the N.C. 210 Bridge and Beacon No. 65, including waters in Waters Bay and a portion of Stump Sound.
The advisory is due to public health risks associated with a wastewater spill caused by a lightning strike. According to information from the North Carolina Recreational Water Quality Program, town officials had said that 100,000 gallons of untreated wastewater had potentially discharged into Waters Bay.
Officials said the spill had been stopped, and the state Division of Water Resources and the Division of Marine Fisheries were investigating the incident.
Wastewater discharges increase the risk that contamination is present in the waters. Adverse health effects such as diarrhea, abdominal cramps and skin infections could occur if people swim in these areas, and the public is advised to avoid bodily contact with these waters.
State officials are monitoring the situation and will lift the advisory when bacteriological test results show levels within state and federal standards.