Water Quality – E.coli Reports

Below are the Farmington River and tributaries water sampling sites. The FRWA regularly tests for bacteria at the Lower Farmington River, which have been chosen based upon certain parameters of interest. The information collected is analyzed by the FRWA in our laboratory space donated by the Town of Simsbury Water Pollution Control facility and the data is then shared with the Connecticut Department of Energy & Environmental Protection. The Upper Farmington River is sampled once a month by the FRWA and taken to the MDC (Metropolitan District Commission) Water Treatment Facility lab in Bloomfield.

You can use FRWA’s Water Quality Map to view sampling sites, sample results, and photos.  In addition, you can weekly updates organized by town. Keep in mind that weather can greatly affect the outcome. For example, more rain equals more runoff into the river potentially carrying pollutants, including feces from geese and dog and other components which increase E.coli levels. Many of the testing sites are smaller brooks which are not used in a recreational manner. The FRWA samples them to determine sources of bacteria and how to potentially reduce runoff from those sources. Testing upriver and downriver from a tributary may show if a brook has an impact on the overall bacteria levels in the river. The impact also depends upon how much flow the stream has. Information about tributaries can again indicate what areas should be looked into for cleanup or other measures to reduce polluted runoff.

Postings of the E.coli levels will let you know more about the status of the river. E. coli is not considered safe in drinking water at any levels; however the current standards for recreational use levels of E.coli are posted by the CT DEEP as follows:

Recreation Geometric Mean Single Sample Maximum
Designated Swimming less than 126/100ml 235/100ml
Non-designated Swimming less than 126/100ml 410/100ml
All Other Recreational Uses less than 126/100ml 576/100ml

For more info please check out the CT DEEP Water Quality Standards Report.