Bexhill Quarry.
Bexhill Quarry. The Northern Star Archives

Two broken ankles: This is why you don't swim at Bexhill

ONE man has learned a hard lesson about looking before you leap after he fractured both ankles at Bexhill Quarry.

According to an NSW Ambulance media spokesman, a man in his early 50s took a fall at the waterhole and was injured on Sunday.

"Paramedics were called around 2.30pm on Sunday, January 1st, 2017," the spokesman said.

"He came out the water on his own, then was assisted at scene by paramedics before being transported to Lismore Hospital."

This waterhole was mentioned in an article on the top places not to swim last month in this newspaper.

While the swimming hole at the former Bexhill Brickworks look very appealing, it is in fact Crown land and the NSW Department of Lands and Lismore City Council have always warned locals against swimming in the waterhole.

There's more danger than broken bones at the waterholes as chemical analysis of the water by Southern Cross University revealed swimmers are putting themselves at peril.

In 2002 tests revealed the water's pH level was almost as acidic as vinegar, with aluminium levels 2500 times greater than the Australian guidelines.

Then in 2010 tests revealed the levels had dropped from the previous results, but were still very high - the water then recorded a pH level of 3.98, well below National Health and Medical Research Council recreational guidelines of between 6.5 and 8.5, meaning it was highly acidic.

Tests undertaken again in 2014 found that the pH levels at 3.83, and the aluminium levels at 1.052mg per litre since 2002 - still considerably higher than the Australian standard of 0.200mg of aluminium per litre.

Swim safely with Watersafety NSW:

  • Never dive into a dam
  • Be aware that dam levels may change
  • Beware of submerged objects that may be hidden from view
  • After heavy rains, or after a period of drought, small children may not be aware that water levels have changed.


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