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Eliminating Identified Problems

No Discharge Areas or Zones

Pollution prevention, through education and promotion of sanitary practices, is important because monitoring and enforcement against illegal dumping of boat waste are difficult.84

  • Inform boat owners of the location of pump-out facilities and educate them about the importance of keeping harmful sewage out of the water. Advertise and promote pump-out facilities. Be sure that the facility is clean and readily accessible.

If a pump-out facility does not exist, work with the DEP and Maine’s Clean Boatyards and Marinas Program to explore

the possibility of developing such a facility. To ensure compliance with facility rules, customers can sign off on an agreement to disclose their sewage management practices. Additionally, a log of pump-out activity can be kept by the facility operator and/or harbormaster. Local and state level cooperation is necessary to ensure compliance.

A No Discharge Area (or Zone) covers all or part of a water body where any discharge of treated and untreated sewage is prohibited from all vessels. The US EPA desig- nates No Discharge Areas, and communities work with the DEP to complete the petition and designation process.


In addition to signage posting the status of the beach and/or shellfish growing area, consider posting education- al signage at locations with the greatest risk of pollution, including freshwater inputs to the shoreline (e.g., river

mouth, stream, storm drains, seepages, etc.). Typically, these locations have high bacteria counts during and following rainfall. This may also include stagnant tidal pools that do not flush with the changing tide. The signage can sim- ply state: “Unsuitable for Water Contact” or “No Swimming or Wading in Storm Drain.” Signage can also be posted to promote healthy beach habits such as: “Do Not Feed Water- fowl” and “Dispose of Trash and Pet Waste Properly.” There are many ways to approach educational signage and the lan- guage should be modified for the particular area.

NOTICE Avoid water contact at this location

High bacteria levels may result from rainfall and stormwater runoff, malfunctioning septic systems, livestock and wildlife contamination, and/or poor sanitary beach practices. Exposure to high bacteria levels may cause nausea, diarrhea, stomach cramps, chills, and fever. Skin rashes and infections of the eyes, ears, nose, and throat may also occur.

If you are sick, notify your physician or seek treatment. If you have reason to believe your symptoms were due to water contact at this location, CONTACT INFORMATION. Please refer to this area as BEACH OR AREA NAME.

NewYork State Department of Conservation


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