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Kayaking – Alarming levels of E. coli in the River Thames

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Sky Sports Reports suggest that shockingly high levels of E. coli bacteria have been measured in parts of the River Thames, the river that runs through London.

That's bad news for organizers of next week's Henley Royal Regatta, one of the world's largest and most prestigious regattas, which is also being held in one of the most polluted parts of the river.

Environmental group Henley and Marlow River Action Group tested the water 27 times between May 23 and June 25. They measured an average of 1,213 E. coli colony-forming units (CFU) per 100 ml of water.

Anything above 900 CFU per 100ml exceeds the UK Environment Agency's indoor bathing water quality standards, so the Thames is not safe for swimming. As a paddler, it is advisable to be cautious.

Horror and horror: High levels of E. coli have been measured in the River Thames, just days before the Henley Royal Regatta. Photo: Pascal Images/NTB
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However, Thames Water, the company responsible for water quality, believes the organisation is exaggerating. According to Sky Sports, they consider the water to be satisfactory.

With tears: - Very easy

With tears: – Very easy


What these results show is that E. coli levels in the Henley area of ​​the River Thames consistently reach levels that the Environment Agency considers “good” for bathing water, under dry conditions, says Thames Water.

However, organizers take the trials seriously, advising paddlers to cover cuts, cuts and blisters with waterproof bandages, as well as avoid swallowing river water. They also do not recommend going barefoot in the river.

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