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photo courtesy Souhegan Watershed Association website

Jun 18, 2016 11:28 AM

Areas of Souhegan River unsafe for swimming; Merrimack River ok

High levels of bacteria have been found in parts of the Souhegan River, prompting health warnings as the weather turns warm enough for swimming.

According to The Telegraph of Nashua, high levels of E.coli bacteria were found in the most recent series of tests conducted on June 14.

"The headwaters and the mouth of the river tested OK, but the middle section of the river from Wilton to Amherst tested at levels that made it unsuitable for swimming. Watson Park at the mouth of the river in Merrimack tested good at 63.7," George May, of the Souhegan Watershed Association, told the newspaper.

In contrast, water testing of the Merrimack River found that water body safe for swimming between Manchester and Tyngsborough, Mass.

In New Hampshire, the limit for E. coli in freshwater swimming areas is 88 cfu/100mL, which is more strict than the EPA standards.

Water quality test results for a long list of spots along both the Souhegan and Merrimack rivers can be found on the Souhegan Watershed Association website.

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