The Natural Resources Defense Council has released its annual rating of the nation's beaches -- and it finds that Ontario Beach Park in Rochester is once again one of the most frequently-closed beaches in America.
The NRDC "Testing the Waters" report is a compilation of the water quality data all public swimming beaches have to take every day during the season. If bacteria levels and runoff in the water are too high, local health department officials have to close the beach
Forty percent of the samples taken at Ontario Beach in Charlotte tested too high last year. That makes it one of 17 American beaches the NRDC identifies as having significant closing problems.
A short distance away, Durand Eastman Beach failed 21 percent of the time. Hamlin Beach State Park Area 4 was 27 percent and Area 3 was the best of the local beaches, closed just 13 percent of the time.
Some researchers think agricultural and street storm water runoff into the Genesee River account for a lot of the local beach closings.
Ontario Beach also has an issue with the Charlotte Pier. Prevailing winds trap algae and other debris against the pier, where it rots and contributes to the high bacteria counts.