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53% of Samples Taken at Wheeling, WV Unsafe.

23% of samples taken from the Ohio River tested unsafe for swimming due to bacterial contamination according to analyses conducted by the Ohio River Valley Sanitation Commission (ORSANCO) at six sites spread over five states along the 981-mile river (see map below). Every site tested unsafe at least once during the week of June 20, the most recent sampling period available. Wheeling, WV scored worst with 16 of 30 samples testing unsafe. The Ohio River watershed encompasses 189,422 square miles and all or part of 15 states but is not included in the EPA national database of swimming beach advisories, which generally covers only coastal and Great Lakes beaches.

Ohio River

For more information on the Clean Water Act’s failed July 1, 1983 policy goal regarding water and recreation: EarthDesk July 1, 2014 and EarthDesk July 1, 2013.