Concerns Over Seine Water Quality Before Paris 2024 Olympics

seine water quality

Concerns Over Seine Water Quality Before Paris 2024 Olympics

As the Paris 2024 Olympic Games approach, there are worries about the Seine water quality. Recent tests show the river has high levels of harmful bacteria. These findings could affect the open-water swimming and triathlon events planned for the Games.


Seine Water Quality Findings 

The latest tests released by the Paris mayor’s office showed Enterococci and E. coli bacteria levels are far above the upper limits imposed by sports federations. E. coli levels were particularly high, ten times over acceptable levels. Local authorities have said that recent heavy rains have worsened water quality in the River Seine. The rain has increased the river’s flow, and with less sunshine and cooler temperatures, the water remains below safe levels. 


Dangers of Enterococci & E. Coli

Enterococci and E. coli, found in the River Seine, are dangerous bacteria. They are commonly found in contaminated water and are indicators of faecal matter. Enterococcal infections can cause UTIs, bacteremia, and endocarditis. E. coli infections can cause severe gastrointestinal illness, leading to diarrhoea, abdominal pain, and vomiting. As a result, WHO recommends testing drinking water for bacteria every year. Southern Scientific’s standard drinking water test can detect E. coli & Enteroccoci to protect against contamination. 

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Backup Plans in Place

If the Seine water quality does not improve, backup plans are available. The Olympic triathlon races are scheduled for July 30 and 31, with the Mixed Relay on August 5. If the water remains unsafe, these events could be changed to duathlons, which do not include swimming. This already happened last year when the Mixed Relay at Paris’ test event was changed to a duathlon due to poor water quality.


Efforts to Improve Seine Water Quality

Despite these problems, much work has been done to clean the Seine. Over €1.4 billion has been spent in the past ten years to improve Paris’s sewer system and build new water treatment and storage facilities. This effort started 30 years ago and aims to make the Seine safe for swimming for the first time in 100 years. The efforts to clean the Seine are not only for the Olympics. They are part of a long-term plan to improve the river’s ecosystem, biodiversity, and public health. 


Conclusion for Seine Water Quality Concerns

With just two weeks until the Paris 2024 Olympics, the water quality of the River Seine is a big concern. But, ongoing efforts and good weather could still make the river safe for the planned swimming events. Authorities are closely monitoring the situation with routine bacteria in water testing, like that offered by Southern Scientific. Testing for bacterial contamination is important for everyone to keep water clean and safe. 


Test for bacteria in your drinking water today with our standard drinking water test!

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