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Two popular Boise ponds closed after officials find elevated E.coli levels

Posted at 3:37 PM, Jun 21, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-21 23:40:19-04

The City of Boise has closed all ponds at Esther Simplot Park as well as Quinn’s Pond, because E. coli bacteria concentrations have tested above state water quality standards for recreational use, City officials said.

“Boise Public Works employees conduct water quality tests at Esther Simplot Pond and Quinn’s Pond weekly from April through September. The most recent weekly test came back showing bacteria levels that exceeded water quality standards,” said Boise City Parks and Recreation spokesperson Bonnie Shelton.

Quinn’s Pond and Esther Simplot Ponds will be closed until further readings show that bacteria concentrations are below state water quality standards for recreational use, she added.

Boise Parks and Recreation staff are posting signs at all beaches to notify visitors about the closure.

“Due to the elevated bacteria test results, Boise Public Works staff are conducting daily water quality tests in all ponds to monitor bacteria levels. We will continue to update the public on the status of those tests,” Shelton stated.

City staff is working to identify and address the source of the bacteria once it’s identified. That process could take up to a week or more, officials said.

The Central District Health Department has not received any reports of people getting sick after swimming at Esther Simplot Park or Quinn’s Pond.

Officials have issued safety and general use tips for those who plan to recreate in the ponds once they re-open, including:

-Don’t ingest the water
-Wash your hands after use
-Be sure to shower after swimming.
-Pick up after your dog when using Boise parks
-Keep your pets out of the water
-Don’t feed geese or ducks

Updates on pond closures will be posted on the Boise Parks and Recreation website.