Montreal's Saint Lawrence River has officially been deemed highly contaminated. Microbiologists obtained a sample of the water from 24 Heures, and tested the water last week, finding high levels of bacteria, including E. coli, enterococci, and 18 times more fecal matter in it than there should be. Unfortunately, the 200 participants of Montreal's Big Splash weren't made aware of this before they all jumped off the Jacques Cartier pier last Tuesday. The best (or maybe the worst) part of the whole thing is that the entire point of the Big Splash is to show that swimming in the Saint Lawrence River is safe. Oh, the irony!
The water sample that was tested was taken by Aqualabo scientists on the 28th, the day of the Big Splash. The organizers of the event said they checked with the city and that the water was safe, however, a spokesperson for the city said a warning was posted online, the day of the Big Splash, saying those who wanted to swim should wait 24 to 36 hours for the results.
As amusing as the irony is, hopefully no one actually got an infection or was affected by the water in any way, because lord knows "I jumped into infected water trying to prove that it was safe to swim in" would not be a fun story to tell over and over again.