Should we bathe in the river or not?
When the heat wave hits Montreal, everyone is looking to get in the water. Is swimming in the St. Lawrence River a refreshing or disgusting option? It depends on the time and the place.
Montreal has a few beaches where you can swim. The water quality of these beaches is managed locally by the boroughs where they are located.
The most popular – and the closest to the center of the island – is of course the Verdun beach. But swimming is not always recommended. Before going there, citizens must dial 514 280-0789to know if swimming is possible or not that day.
To see all public access to the St. Lawrence in Quebec, visit the Plan d&rsquo website ;action Saint-Laurent.
“Swimming may be prohibited during violent storms or as a preventive measure during and afterevents of rain.There may also be a bathing ban ranging from 24 hours to 72 hours during overflows from storm or sanitary networks. The duration of the ban variesdepending on the extent of the overflows”, can be read on the borough's website.
On the safety side, the The borough notes that “when the swimming area is unsupervised, swimming is not recommended and at one's own risk due to high water levels and strong currents”.
In other places, it is the Service des grands parcs that manages water quality and monitors swimmers. This is the case of the Cap-Saint-Jacques nature park and the Bois-de-L’Île-Bizard nature park.
For these two beaches, it is possible to obtain an overview of the state of the water quality on the website of the City before moving. In summer, the information is updated daily by the Aquatic Environment Monitoring Network (RSMA).
But how does the City know if the water is suitable for swimming or not? Tests are carried out regularly in order to analyze the quality of the water according to the acceptable criteria defined by the Ministry of the Environment and the Fight against Climate Change (MELCC).
For the public, there is an interactive map that allows you to follow the bacteriological quality of the waterways on and around the island. For each location, the water quality can range from “polluted” to “excellent”.
Anyway, see you next wave heat, you no longer worry about whether or not you can jump into the river. A little verification by phone or on the Web is enough before diving into the waters of the St. Lawrence. Get your swimsuits!
6 access to “natural” water in Montreal
- Urban beach of Verdun
- Bois-de-l'Île-Bizard nature park
- Promenade Bellerive (Tétreaultville) < /li>
- Cap-Saint-Jacques Nature Park (Two Mountains Lake)
- Jean-Doré Beach (artificial lake)
- East Beach (Pointe-aux-Trembles) – swimming is still prohibited here