KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- A report released by the Tennessee Division of Water Resources contains a long list of East Tennessee waterways that have been deemed unsafe for fishing, swimming or recreational activities due to high levels of potentially harmful bacteria.
The report states that streams or lakes found to have high levels of bacteria will have clearly visible signs posted to warn people of any threat to public health.
"The presence of pathogens, disease-causing organisms, affects the public’s ability to safely swim, wade, and fish in streams and reservoirs.
Pathogen sources include failing septic tanks, collection system failure, failing animal waste systems, or urban runoff," says the report. " About 122 river miles are posted due to bacterial contamination."
In addition, Approximately 124,000 reservoir acres and 368 river miles are currently posted due to contaminated fish. This means that no fish should be consumed from the waterways listed in the report.