With Labor Day Weekend here, many people will be heading to
the river to swim and fish, but one viewer has some concerns about the Ogeechee
WTOC Viewer Steve Tant lives on the Ogeechee River and wants
to know if it is safe to swim and eat the fish in the waters, and most
importantly, if he should allow his grandsons to swim in the river.
When this question was asked on my Facebook page, many were
split on the issue. Some have no worries, some swim but don't eat the fish and
others won't do anything.
It was just a few years ago that a massive fish kill ravaged
the wild like, causing breathing and skin problems for people who were in the
water at the time, and the waterway was closed to the public.
Now, the Ogeechee Riverkeeper said there are no lingering
problems, but they are planning additional research and looking to see what
Georgia Southern University produces in terms of data.
Meanwhile, Riverkeeper Emily Merkestyn wants to remind
everyone that there risks involved with swimming and fishing in freshwater
Always keep flotation devices handy when boating or
swimming, and wear appropriate footwear at all times while in the water.
If you have an open cut or sore, bandage it up completely
before getting in the water and try to keep it dry. If a wound gets wet or if
you sustain a cut or injury while in the water, take the time to thoroughly
clean the wound when you get home.
Never drink untreated water directly from the river and
always make sure fish are thoroughly cooked before consuming.