Red beach investigated

Alanna Kelly

UPDATE: 2:15 p.m.

Water treatment staff are investigating the mystery at Cedar Creek Beach, where rocks have turned a rusty orange colour and there is an oily looking film on the water.

Castanet first learned of the strange situation on Wednesday and spoke to dog walkers and residents in the area, who said they are stumped as to what caused the discolouration.

Concern has been raised over whether the water is safe for pets or humans to go in.

“It’s naturally caused, but we have taken samples for tests,” said City of Kelowna spokesperson Tom Wilson.

Results are expected in the coming days, and Castanet will update when those are provided.

City staff say the beach will remain open.

David Karn, a provincial environment and climate change strategy spokesman, said the matter is under investigation.

ORIGINAL: 5 a.m.

A large section of rocks along the waterfront at Cedar Creek Park have turned orange and are causing residents to worry about what is in the water.

Nicole Sapieha said she first noticed the “rusty stained rocks” about a month ago and since then, it has become worse and worse.

“Is this safe that I can let my dog in, is this safe that I can go swimming?” said Sapieha.

The orange coloured rocks stretch for over 30 metres on the shore and runs into the water.

Areas further from the shore have contaminated water pooling between the rocks.

“There are pools of water in between the rocks that are almost like oil, it is not natural, it looks like a chemical,” said Sapieha.

Dog walkers in the area said they have also been left wondering what caused the orange colour.

“This is a dog beach and I am worried about my dog being in the water if this is chemical, if this is rust, or if this is anything not natural that it could be affecting the water, the environment and my dog,” said Sapieha.

The mystery of the orange rocks has puzzled residents walking in the area and they hope answers will be provided.

Castanet has reached out to the City of Kelowna to see if there is any risk to the public.

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