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Delaware's Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) monitors Delaware's entire ocean coast (in Sussex County), Delaware Bay coast, Inland Bays (Rehoboth Bay, Indian River Bay, and Little Assawoman Bay), and a number of freshwater ponds. Beach season sampling runs from the second Monday in May through the second Monday in September. Off-season sampling is conducted in conjunction with the Delaware Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation. Exit EPA Click for Disclaimer

Over the years, Delaware has refined its sampling program to make it more efficient and effective. Delaware applies sophisticated mathematical models to determine where and when rainfall may cause elevated bacteria levels and the associated swimming advisories.

Delaware has updated its recreational water standards to make them consistent with the BEACH Act standards. Advisories are issued if a single sample of marine water exceeds 104 enterococci per 100 milliliters of sample or if the running geometric mean over a 30-day period at a site exceeds 35 enterococci per 100 milliliters.

There is a permanent caution regarding swimming in Rehoboth Bay, Indian River Bay, and Little Assawoman Bay, particularly after a heavy rain, as these Inland Bays are poorly-flushed.

Hotline for Beach Conditions in Delaware:
1-800-922-WAVE or

Delaware Recreational Water Quality - DNREC Online Exit EPA Click for Disclaimer

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Beaches Routinely Monitored In Delaware

Sussex County (Marine Beaches):

State Contact For Delaware Beaches

Debbie Rouse (debbie.rouse@state.de.us)
Shellfish and Recreational Water Branch
Watershed Assessment Section
DE Department of Natural Resources & Environmental Control Exit EPA Click for Disclaimer
820 Silver Lake Blvd., Suite 220
Dover, DE 19904-2464
Fax = 302-739-6140

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