How contaminated are South Shields' beaches? How to to get pollution information for Sandhaven, Marsden and more
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South Tyneside beaches throughout the summer are at the busiest they will be all year.
But with so many people heading to the coast – and concerns about sewage overflows at Britain’s beaches ongoing – it’s vital to know how clean coastal water is across the North East.
How can I check before I head to the beach?
The group Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) has launched the newest version of a helpful interactive map which shows up to date pollution forecasts at over 400 coastal locations across the UK, including a handful in and around South Tyneside.
This tracks sewage overflows which may impact popular coastal locations and pollution risk forecasts to give beach goers a full understanding of the quality of the water they could be swimming in.
The alerts are put into four categories, the first shows there are no alerts in place, a second which shows there is a risk warning in place, another which suggests water quality information is not available and a fourth which means local sewer systems are under maintenance and real time alerts have been disabled.
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What is the situation in the North East?
Luckily for those who spend their summers at beaches in and around South Shields, the map does not show any issues with water quality at beaches along the South Tyneside coast.
This is part of a wider trend which sees no issues with any coastal locations from Sunderland to Tynemouth, although at the time of writing bathing at Cullercoats Beach is not advised due to Poor annual classification.
Where else can I get information on water quality?
Further information can be found from The Rivers Trust, which has signalled two points of interest close to Littlehaven Beach. These are two combined sewage overflows which are designed to collect rainwater, domestic sewage and industrial wastewater in the same pipe and remove any additional waste which have overflowed into the mouth of the Tyne in the past. The Rivers Trust claim they spilled a combined 53 times over 2022.