Health officials testing sewer contaminated water in Grand Traverse Bay

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Health officials in Traverse City expect to know Tuesday, June 13, whether or not they can lift a public health advisory in the Grand Traverse Bay

Three-thousand gallons of untreated sewage leaked out of a sewer, and into a creek that flows through the Boardman River, and into Grand Traverse Bay on Saturday, June 11.

The Grand Traverse Health Department is advising people to avoid contact with water in both the river and the bay.

Tom Buss is the director of environmental health at the department. He said he doesn’t think E. Coli will last long in the bay.

“We’ve had certainly in the past years we’ve had larger release than this and mother nature has a way to cleanup the lakes through the action of the sunlight, with ultraviolet light, it kills the bacteria.”

“We want to keep people out of the water, until we know it’s safe. Things that were concerned with as far as potential illnesses from folks that swim in sewage laden water could involve gastrointestinal type of illnesses, skin rashes, ear infections, eye infections.”

Buss said the department is currently testing the water, and release its findings to the public on Tuesday.