Is it safe to swim in Puget Sound? The Swim Guide is a smart phone and web application that makes it easy for Northwest-area residents to find a safe beach for swimming and other recreation. Updates for Puget Sound beaches are managed locally by staff at Soundkeeper. Saltwater and freshwater beaches are included. The innovative application was originally developed by the Lake Ontario Waterkeeper to communicate beach safety data in the Great Lakes Region and the application also displays data input by member groups of the Waterkeeper Alliance across much of North America.
How can I get the Swim Guide?
The Swim Guide is a FREE downloadable application for iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, Android (2.1 or higher). Download the application or view and use the Swim Guide online.
How does the Swim Guide work?
The Swim Guide utilizes water quality monitoring data from government authorities to determine the quality of water at a growing number of beaches throughout Puget Sound, British Columbia and across North America. Green marks indicate where the water quality is acceptable, red marks show where it is unsafe. The Swim Guide is updated as the public data is gathered and posted. The guide also provides descriptions of public beaches enabling users to get directions, view photos and even report pollution immediately to Soundkeeper’s pollution monitoring program.
Features on the Swim Guide enable you to:
- Discover accessible marine beaches near you
- Identify at a glance which beaches are clean for swimming (Green) and which have water quality problems (Red) in real-time
- Get walking, driving, or transit directions to the beach of your choice
- Bookmark beaches for easy access
- Invite your friends to join you at a beach using Facebook, Twitter, email and SMS text messaging
- Report pollution or environmental concerns
- View original descriptions with photographs of over 1,500 different beaches so you can learn a bit of history and geography as you explore!
By introducing the Swim Guide, Soundkeeper is aiming not only to protect beachgoers from getting sick, but also seeks to raise public awareness about pollution threatening our rights to safe swimmable and fishable waters. Water quality may be compromised after heavy rains, sewage overflow events, or as a result of animal waste. The Swim Guide informs beachgoers about potential pollution hazards and provides statistical information about how often each beach is closed so they can make educated decisions about where to go.
How can I support the Swim Guide?
The Swim Guide is supported entirely by donations from individuals, foundations, and corporate sponsors. You can make a donation to the Puget Soundkeeper Alliance and help keep the Swim Guide alive or you can support the Swim Guide development directly.
Join us on a volunteer patrol, a cleanup, or a water quality monitoring project to learn more about Puget Sound pollution issues.