Bathed in safety

UK-based environmental consultant BMT Cordah has developed a forecasting tool to increase public safety in European bathing waters.

The BMT Cordah tool supports the revised Bathing Water Directive, which states that public bodies must make information available on regional bathing water quality, following UK concerns of contaminated sea water.

The device has been developed as part of the European project SANY, an initiative that aims to improve and standardise environmental risk sensors throughout the EC. The work builds on experience gained by BMT Cordah, part of the BMT Group, in creating bathing-water-quality prediction methods for the UK Environment Agency.

The internet-based device produces algorithms that can predict future conditions by analysing historic meteorological forecasts, tidal conditions and seasonal bathing trends.

A prototype has been demonstrated at a workshop in Poland attended by bathing-water specialists. A further workshop is scheduled to take place in France next year.

Zoheir Sabeur, associate director of BMT Cordah in Southampton, said: ‘The introduction of the new EU Bathing Water Directive has huge implications for bathing-water-quality management.

'BMT Cordah's tool will allow beach managers to predict the expected levels of bacteria in bathing water and make informed decisions on whether water is suitable for bathing, to ensure public safety.’