Water Sanitation Health

Guidelines for safe recreational water environments
Volume 1 : Coastal and fresh waters

Executive summary

Monitoring and assessment

WHO has developed a manual based upon a framework “Code of Good Practice for Recreational Water Monitoring.” This Code comprises a series of statements of principle or objectives that, if adhered to, would lead to the design and implementation of a monitoring programme of scientific credibility. It applies in principle to the monitoring of all waters used for recreational activities that involve repeated or continuous direct contact with a water body.

The Code is published in Monitoring Bathing Waters. They provide a linkage to the various health effects associated with recreational waters and incrementally builds up the component parts of a successful programme — key health issues, monitoring and assessment strategies, and principal management considerations. It also provides sufficient detail to allow a manager to undertake such a programme, integrating all the component parts in a consolidated whole. Cross-referencing between the Code and the various chapters of these Guidelines should ensure that a valid and replicable monitoring and assessment programme is established.

The Code and Monitoring Bathing Waters provide guidance on the design and implementation of a monitoring programme, including the design of a monitoring programme that includes appropriate quality assurance, data collection, data handling, data interpretation and reporting. In addition to this general guidance, guidance is given in relation to specific hazards that may be encountered in recreational water use areas.