Bathing water quality can be affected by several factors, including urban drainage, agricultural run-off, algae, private sewers, misconnections and dog, bovine and bird excrement, as well as South West Water's infrastructure.

These risks are increased at times of heavy rainfall, when fertiliser and debris from roads (including salt during the winter) are washed into rivers, streams and surface water drains and then into the sea.

Stormwater overflows, which protect homes and gardens from sewer flooding, are designed to operate at times of heavy rain.

Read about the work we are doing to help tackle sewer flooding and the overall management of storm water: Downstream Thinking