Hermitage Beach at Pomme de Terre listed as “swimming not recommended” due to high levels of E. coli

Published: Jun. 8, 2023 at 5:34 PM CDT
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HERMITAGE, Mo. (KY3) - Bright yellow signs are posted at the Hermitage Beach of Pomme de Terre State Park. They are warning you swimming is not recommended by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.

This is the only state park in the state with the warning.

”We’re testing the water for the water standard, the water quality for basically E. coli. We’re testing to see how much E. coli is in the water,” said Fred Hicks with the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.

Every Monday from Memorial Day to Labor Day, the state tests. While E. coli is usually found in most water, if it’s too high, DNR puts out a warning.

”It’s just a naturally occurring thing. What has been determined is, for some reason, there may be more of it this week in that Hermitage sample than what is normally there,” said Hicks.

Hicks says there are several reasons the E. coli levels could be high.

“Sometimes we will see elevated results because it’s been raining in an area, and then the water runoff from around the lake, you know, the runoff will come into the lake, and it will throw those readings off, but after a while, once the water circulates, maybe for several days or a week, it will return back below 190,” said Hicks.

The Pittsburg side is not impacted. The warning will be up through the weekend. The state will test again on Monday.

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