The state Health Department has issued a brown water advisory for Oahu and Kauai. The public is reminded that after any storm event, storm water runoff may contain sewage, harmful micro-organisms, and chemicals from commercial and industrial sources.
The public should stay out of beaches or streams that are contaminated by storm (brown) water. Storm water can contain harmful micro-organisms (pathogens) and other harmful pollutants from overflowing sewage systems, such as cesspools or septic tanks, and animal feces flowing into storm drains.
Excessive storm water can also contain sewage from overflowing manholes or chemicals from polluted runoff from comercial and industrial facilities.
Standing water from heavy rains can also contain pathogens from cesspools in unsewered areas, such as the North Shore Oahu, Kauai, Maui and the Big Island.
Questions regarding the safety or cleaning of standing water or “brown water” in the coastal and inland areas of the State should be directed to the Department of Health, Clean Water Branch on Oahu at (808) 586-4309 during normal business hours.