Durban beaches toxic - report

2012-09-08 12:31

Durban - Eighty percent of Durban beach water that was tested during the past year did not meet South African water standards, the Independent on Saturday reported.

The newspaper reported that the city's beach water fell foul of the SA Quality Guidelines.

The tests carried out by the eThekwini municipality's water and sanitation department for the year, ending July, had revealed high levels of E coli and Enterococcus bacteria, which cause cholera and gastro-intestinal illnesses.

The newspaper also reported that Professor Hideshige Takada from the Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology said Durban's Isipingo beach had the highest levels of hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH) in the world.

HCH is a toxic compound used as an insecticide on crops and wood and for treating scabies and head lice.

Takada's research was based on samples taken from 200 sites around the world.

Concentrations of HCHs in Durban were 61 nanograms per gram (ng/g), while in Port Elizabeth it was 5ng/g and on the Cape west coast it was 3ng/g.

  • lynn.syme.1 - 2012-09-08 12:43

    My beautiful country!

      Squeegee - 2012-09-08 13:27

      The Karoo is next...

      Klaus - 2012-09-08 13:40

      @squeegeee, as reported in Spiegel magazin today, Fracking has been postponed in Germany until further notice

  • Archie22is - 2012-09-08 12:45

    So, how does that affect fishing? #Just asking

      bob.small.7547 - 2012-09-08 13:05

      Fish consume it and then you consume the fish!

      Squeegee - 2012-09-08 13:27

      You can eat the fish if you want to glow in the dark... - 2012-09-08 13:31

      No the only thing that you can get from fish is Mercury poisoning. As that stores up in the fish. SA fish carry the highest concentrate of Mercury in the world. Most Mercury is found in Reef Fish. The other toxin leaves the fish after a while.

      pisciotta - 2012-09-08 13:39

      If you eat fish, you eat what the fish eats. And you are what you eat. This is not rocket science. Even someone with a HIGH Matric mark of 25% should know this.

      byron.jay.37 - 2012-09-08 15:25

      It does not affect any way. You can still catch the fish. So lets assume you hungry. What if I offered you a dish "A fish caught in intoxicated water" and "a fish caught in fresh water"...I obviously tell you where the fish was caught... Your answer can be assumed on the consensus that you are rational.

      Madoqua - 2012-09-08 15:57

      HCH is primarily in the agricultural (and anti-lice shampoo) pesticide Lindane and waste products from the Lindane manufacturing process. It was banned a few years ago in SA. It bio-accumulates, so you will find it in fish and whatever eats the fish. From a human consumption point of view, most of our commercial fishing happens in the Atlantic so we will most likely not be affected directly.

      patsy.smith.125 - 2012-09-08 20:44

      Crappy fish! NOT for eating....

      lionel.defrontignac - 2012-09-09 05:12

      If you like Diesel Gupppies. A grunter a mate caught near the harbour about 10 - 15 years ago, smelt of Benzine...

      Squeegee - 2012-09-09 05:22

      Byron, was the fish swimming in your whiskey? I suppose you meant "toxic" water and not "intoxicated" water...

      jason.sole.92 - 2012-09-09 10:32

      Actually contrary to what ppl claim here you dont eat the stomach of a fish and much would depend on how the fishes immune system treats the bacteria. If the bacteria shown not harmful to fish it would then depend on how the fishes body stores it, it may become a vector for transporting the bacteria but I doubt it. In terms of the chemical likely only trace elements would be found in the flesh of the fish, but then again it depends on how the fish metabolizes the chemical, it may excrete it or it may store it in which case you would get trace residue.

  • bob.small.7547 - 2012-09-08 13:03

    You think the beach water is toxic, how about the bay! The bay water is filthy and disgusting with debris floating everywhere, foam and other foul smelling surface impurities….. and dead fish! These clown cannot do anything properly, really are pathetic when in charge of anything…!

  • charmaine.paterson1 - 2012-09-08 13:07

    Run into the ground, as the greedy get fatter by the day.

  • mknnko003 - 2012-09-08 13:18

    I am going to Durban, you wont stay on my way!

      Mandy Casey - 2012-09-08 15:59

      Great you can cure the lice problem ... Although a little side effect would be the E-Coli. But if it doesn't kill you ...

      jacqui.daanevanrensburg - 2012-09-09 13:45

      Nkosinathi Mokoena, stay out of the ocean, the pollution may turn your skin white.

      sally.lewitt - 2012-09-09 20:47

      Yup.. I won't stay on your way, I'll just go 'one way'.. AWAY. Period

  • iceman196 - 2012-09-08 13:19

    what has that anc lappie ass licker sutcliffe got to say, come on speak up moron

      Zygomix - 2012-09-09 14:24

      Will respond after counting his loot.

  • pisciotta - 2012-09-08 13:36

    One of the most important natural beauties of SA is its coastline. Now even that is falling subject to the evil that is the ignorance of this country. The cesspool that is the government and the ignorant majority is finding its way into the ocean.

  • Klaus - 2012-09-08 13:38

    viva cANCer, VIVA, remember x-mas ?

      sally.lewitt - 2012-09-09 20:58

      Okay Klaus.. What's happening at x-mas?

  • phae.rayden - 2012-09-08 13:42

    This is a crime against existence! Make those responsible swim in, eat fish from and drink this water. You are no better that the floating filth you have allowed to accumulate in the bay!

  • frank.crane.180 - 2012-09-08 14:17

    Personally I intend to avoid Durban like the plague ( pun intended) firstly visitors have to run the gauntlet of ridiculous over policed road and speed trap zones to get their and then the mess.

  • roddy.higgins - 2012-09-08 14:59

    Nobody has thanked the government for providing free headlice treatment while you swim.

  • siyabonga.dacosta - 2012-09-08 15:00

    As long as the bit*$s are not

  • thembelanim - 2012-09-08 15:01

    Durban over Cape Town anyday!!

      p.borchard - 2012-09-10 14:26

      @thembelanim - Kry vir jou....

  • Sechaba Virgil Ndlovu - 2012-09-08 15:15

    Eish soon we will be told not to swim in Durban.

  • byron.jay.37 - 2012-09-08 15:18

    And we prioritize highly insignificant issues such as "Zuma paintings- The spear", "rain that kept Malema away from delivering what he does...", "the Zulu Kings'(King Zwelintini) request for R18 000 000 for new palaces"... Have any of these initiatives(and many more similar ones over these past years that have been given much attention)actually ever contributed to the many structural issues in any way?

  • marysia.vieira - 2012-09-08 15:22

    And only now they discovered the toxicity. This has been like that for the past 30 years already. Have not swam in the sea, Durban or anywhere else for that matter due to the sewage in the water. The last time I was in the sea I found a brown normal size feacal matter on my leg. Was sooooo disgusting.

  • brian.ocinneide.7 - 2012-09-08 15:41

    Let us have a comment from Mad Mike Sutcliffe.

      Zygomix - 2012-09-09 14:25

      Will comment after counting his loot.

  • Andre - 2012-09-08 16:16

    The entire ANC is toxic, and everything they have turned their hands on is rotten!

  • Vince.York - 2012-09-08 18:04

    another enthusiastic "fracking" anc disaster!!!!!! all to slip a few more Rands into some black BEE pocket, probably a zuma connected one too!

  • cheryl.laing.94 - 2012-09-08 18:17

    Makes me irate in a country that is plentiful! This should be brought to the attention of the international health/environmental organizations, as it doesnt only affect South Africa but the rest of us on this planet.

  • patsy.smith.125 - 2012-09-08 20:43

    They've been toxic for years, I believe. No doubt that's why Mike Sutcliffe pooh-poohed the Blue Flag status.

  • woulntitbenice - 2012-09-08 20:51

    What's that in the water?

  • comurray - 2012-09-08 20:51

    Well, well ,well, unwell or dead.

  • ed.carter.351 - 2012-09-08 21:01

    Just wish Idi Amin was alive, he would have driven these cANCer despots into the sea.

  • deborah.delport - 2012-09-08 23:53

    ja nee

  • lionel.defrontignac - 2012-09-09 05:10

    Well, at least if you go swimming at Isipingo, you won't get headlice... maybe I should take my dogs there for a dip... On a more serious side, since the 90's, I have NEVER put my foot in the water in the Bay, or at the Bluff - you will find me North of Umhlanga, or South of Scottburgh - the main sources of Pollution appear to be the Umbilo, Umlaas, and Umgeni Rivers (as well as the various outfall and stormwater pipes).

  • witwolf.digter - 2012-09-09 08:18

    Have you seen in what condition they leave the beaches after the holidays? No wonder....

  • christopher.m.lowe - 2012-09-09 11:11

    Another example of what you get with a bloated, corrupt and useless ANC administration, faced by an emasculated and weak DA 'opposition' whose councillors are far more interested in tweeting their comments from meetings, than actually opposing the ANC and getting things done. Another nail in the coffin for Dirtbin. Once the proud lone debt free city in the world, and now filthy, run down, corrupt and tawdry. No wonder Cape Town runs rings around them. Pfffftt!!

  • ryan.a.smith.3958 - 2012-09-09 11:47

    so one positive is that swimming their cures lice and scabies. lol

  • jacqui.daanevanrensburg - 2012-09-09 13:51

    After last summer there was so much human faeces on the Durban beaches, it was too much to remove by hand, so they dug over the whole beach.

  • leaproach.thekeeper - 2012-09-09 18:03

    Just loved old Durbs. Used to stay in the Four Seasons year after year. Go clubbing after dark [sigh].

      sally.lewitt - 2012-09-09 20:32

      Ditto.. {sigh x 2}

  • abdullah.abdullah.31105 - 2012-09-09 19:14

    The toxins sound bad but i think the nutrients from the sewage might be not so bad, I've heard it supports plankton and the fishing.

  • James.A.Green - 2012-09-09 19:29

    [Inserts angry comment that complains about the goverment and boycotting woolworths (wait wrong article) and blah blah blah, LIKE THIS COMMENT fellow netizens! Yes my comrades dont stop liking! show the world how proactive we are through our complaining! It will SURELY change the world! I bet Jacob Zuma is tearing up right now

      abdullah.abdullah.31105 - 2012-09-09 19:52

      This is a good comment, Ive seen a lot of complaints written hear but i think south africa is not so bad.

  • brionyl.french - 2012-09-10 06:41


  • ludlowdj - 2012-09-10 11:27

    Haven't swum in the sea since the ANC took over and Metro Mike's drivel around our loosing blue flag status. You just have to look at the sea to know that it is contaminated way beyond usability, the days of blue water are long gone. Durbans multi million rand beachfront upgrade is little more than installing seating at a septic tank.

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