Within the West Coast Environmental Unit area, there are a total of 8 larger public beaches (EU beaches, where a larger number of bathers are expected and where there are services that encourage bathing) and 33 smaller beaches (where the number of bathers is not large). The beaches that are monitored are located in Kaskö, Korsholm, Korsnäs, Kristinestad, Malax, Närpes and Vörå (Kaskinen, Mustasaari, Korsnäs, Kristiinankaupunki, Maalahti, Närpiö and Vöyri). The bathing season covers the period between 15 June and 31 August. A total of four samples are taken from the EU beaches and three samples are taken from the smaller beaches. Sampling days are distributed evenly throughout the bathing season so that the interval between sampling days does not exceed one month. A list of the public beaches can be found here. (in Swedish)
The checks examine the levels of intestinal enterococci and Escherichia coli. In connection with sampling, the possible presence of blue-green algae is also observed. At the same time, the general tidiness of the beach is also checked. The maintainer of a beach is responsible for the beach and its safety.
Information on the quality of the bathing water and observations of blue-green algae can be found on the bulletin boards of the beaches and the West Coast Environmental Unit website. When blue-green algae are observed at the beach, a notice is put up warning against swimming. If the water is green from algae or if there is an algae blanket on the water surface, you should not bathe in the water. Small children and pets should be kept at a distance from the beach to avoid swallowing water that may contain blue-green algae. The algae situation can quickly change, especially on sea beaches, partly due to the winds.