Wrightsville Beach gets good rating in national beach pollution study

Reported by Claire Simms - bio|email
Posted by Kristy Ondo - email

WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC (WECT) - A new national study shows that Wrightsville Beach is one of the cleanest beaches in the United States when it comes to water quality.

That hasn't always been the case, according to town officials, who are thrilled about the four star water quality report.

Lamont Burgin and his family spent time in the water at Wrightsville Beach on Wednesday.

"The water looks very clean to me, so I don't have any problem letting my kids hang out and play in it and getting in it myself a little bit," said Burgin.

Public works director, Mike Vukelich, said it wasn't so clean just a few years ago.

Several years ago town leaders wanted to figure out how the ocean was getting contaminated, so they teamed up with the University of North Carolina Wilmington.

They discovered that much of the problem was not sewage from homes or condos, but from boats.

That's when the water around Wrightsville Beach became a "no dump zone" for vessels. The rest of New Hanover County soon followed suit, making the environment healthier for wildlife and people alike.

In addition, two years ago, Wrightsville Beach revamped its storm water system, making sure no runoff ended up in the ocean.

According to the national pollution report, Banks Channel had the worst reported cases of contamination in New Hanover County. Carolina Beach, Holden Beach, Oak Island, and several other area beaches had low contamination, but they were not ranked by the star system.

To view the full beaches report, click here.

To view the report specific to North Carolina, click here.

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