beach water quality

These are the Toronto beaches that are currently unsafe for swimming due to E. coli levels

Toronto's beaches are some of the best places to spend the summer months, but sadly four of the city's most popular waterfront locations are currently unsafe to swim thanks to high levels of E. coli.

The City of Toronto takes daily water samples from the supervised beaches across the city and tests for E. coli bacteria from June to Labour Day, and Toronto Public Health posts warning signs against swimming when levels are found to be higher than 100 E. coli per 100 ml of water. 

As of Aug. 5, testing shows that Marie Curtis Park East Beach, Sunnyside Beach, Hanlan's Point Beach and Kew Balmy Beach all have E. coli levels that exceed the City of Toronto's established beach water quality standard.

The highest amount of E. coli has been reported at Sunnyside Beach, with 495 per 100 ml of water confirmed over the past 24 hours. This is down from yesterday when 858 per 100 millilitre was confirmed. 

"Heavy rainfall and declining weather conditions indicate an increasing trend in E. coli levels," noted the city on Aug. 3.

Marie Curtis Park East Beach is next in line with an E. coli level of 265, followed by Hanlan's Point Beach with 209 and Kew Balmy Beach with 137.

It's common for Toronto beaches to report high levels of E. coli following heavy rainfall and flooding, and we've certainly seen quite a few storms in the city in recent weeks. 

"The public should not swim during and after storms, floods, or heavy rainfall," says the city. "Cloudy water can be an indicator of high levels of bacteria that may pose a risk to human health."

Lead photo by

George Hornaday


Join the conversation Load comments

Latest in City

Someone returned a wallet in Toronto with $600 and credit cards in it

Ontario companies are introducing 4-day work weeks in response to modern life

People band together to rescue raccoon stuck in roof near Toronto

Toronto man finds a piece of history underneath the floor of his home

This is when face masks will no longer be required in Ontario

Man says police took him down for not wearing a mask in Mississauga

The premier just gave Ontario a hilarious new Fordism and it's one for the ages

Ontario capacity limits lifted but some health measures to stay in place until 2022