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Appendix II. Maine Healthy Beaches Program Risk Assessment Matrix

Monitor To check, keep records of.

Monitoring Season Period of time swim beach samples are collected to correspond with public use of recreational water; varies from one beach to another as weather and water temperature vary greatly from region to region; for most beaches in Maine, this is Memorial Day through Labor Day.

Non-point source pollution Indirect contamination (i.e., urban/agricultural runoff); many diffuse sources as compared

to point source (i.e., straight pipe).

Overboard Discharge (OBD) A discharge of sanitary wastewater from residential, commercial, and publicly-owned facili- ties to streams, rivers, and the ocean. Since these are point discharges, they are required to be licensed by the state, and are currently being phased out by the Department of Environmental Protection.

Pathogen Any disease-causing agent, especially a bacterium or other microorganism.

Point-source pollution Direct contamination (i.e., via effluent pipe/smoke stack) as compared to non-point source (i.e.,

storm runoff).

Pollution The presence of harmful contaminants in the environment.

Posting Placement of a sign(s) at beach access points; making information available to the public through Web site,

hotline, or other means.

Recreational waterborne illness Illness spread by swallowing, breathing, or having contact with contaminated water from swimming pools, spas, lakes, rivers, or oceans. Recreational water illnesses can cause a wide variety of symptoms, including gastrointestinal, skin, ear, respiratory, eye, neurologic, and wound infections. Diarrhea is the illness most com- monly reported to the Maine CDC.

Risk assessment matrix (RAM) A preliminary assessment of potential and/or actual pollution sources on or directly adjacent to the beach. The RAM will assist beach managers in making well-informed beach management decisions, in conjunction with routine monitoring to build a “profile” of each BMA and to determine the need for an in-depth sanitary survey of the shoreline and adjacent watershed area(s).

Risk Exposure to possible danger, loss, or injury.

Sanitary survey The goal of a sanitary survey is to identify, document, and eliminate sources of fecal contamination af- fecting water resources (e.g., coastal beaches, shellfish growing areas, and freshwater inputs to these areas).

Sewage Potential source of microbiological contamination of recreational waters. May be associated with system failures in human sewage treatment facilities, leaking sewer lines, septic systems, or with rainfall and resulting surface water runoff.

Special Study Any monitoring, research, and data analysis conducted beyond the routine Enterococci monitoring of beaches. Typically, special studies are conducted in areas with chronic bacteria issues.

Standard operating procedure (SOP) Officially approved document describing prescribed techniques. Accepted method of performance.


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