The waters at three beaches in southeast Brooklyn were festering with so much fecal bacteria, they were deemed unsafe for swimming on 101 days over the past two summers, according to city Health Department records.
The filthy surf plagued the roughly mile-long stretch covered by Kiddie, Manhattan and Kingsborough Community College beaches, which are concentrated around Rockaway Inlet.
They accrued more than triple the total bacteria warnings issued at the city’s seven other public beaches. Ocean beaches have less stagnant water than inlet beaches.
The Health Department attributed the bacteria uptick to “increased rainfall.”
A clean-water advocate explained that the city has 460 points along its shoreline where about 27 billion gallons of raw sewage and storm water are dumped into New York Harbor every year when combined sanitary-storm sewers overflow during heavy storms.
“That’s the product of hundreds of years of overdevelopment in the city,” said Dan Shapley, the water-quality program director for Riverkeeper. He explained that certain city sewer designs date back to “when people were dying of cholera and the goal was to get [the sewage] out and away from the neighborhood as fast as possible.”