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Chatfield State Park swim beach closed due to E. coli

The closure will last at least the next 24 hours for additional testing, according to Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

JEFFERSON COUNTY, Colo. — The swim beach at Chatfield State Park was temporarily closed on Tuesday due to the presence of E. coli, according to Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW).

The swim beach closed at 10 a.m. Tuesday.  Additional testing was being done for the naturally occurring bacteria, with results expected in about 24 hours, CPW said on Twitter. If those results come back normal, the swim beach can reopen, a CPW spokesman said.

Under guidelines from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), natural swim areas are tested for E. coli on a weekly basis. If a result shows an E. coli concentration above 235 organisms per 100 milliliters, the beach must be closed, CPW says on its website.

Of two tests conducted recently, one came back normal and one came back elevated, the CPW spokesman said.

The temporary closure due to E. coli only affects the swim beach.

CPW says elevated E. coli results can be caused by:

  • Fecal waste from swimmers, pets or wildlife.
  • Improperly disposed dirty diapers.
  • Excessive runoff from rain or flood.
  • Runoff from urban, suburban or rural areas.
  • Malfunctioning septic systems.

> Video above: People enjoy Chatfield State Park on the first normal holiday weekend since COVID-19

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