It’s official – the Waimakariri River is unswimmable.





This sign is in a Christchurch City Council area close to the mouth of the river near a popular summer swimming spot.

It’s time to demand swimmable rivers. We must stop the huge government subsidies for irrigation which remove massive volumes of water and replace it with a health hazard for our kids.

Vote Minto for Mayor for a fighter for swimmable rivers.


  1. That looks like one that should be below the Old Highway Bridge. Signs of that nature have been there in some form or another for decades. It did not stop people swimming there though.

    It is not that I disagree. Cleaning up our fresh water resource should be a high priority. However the Waimakariri is a Regional Council responsibility, as is the monitoring and enforcement of WQL rules per the Land and Water Regional Plan.

    • This is just politiking. There are large areas of NZ lakes and rivers that are unswimmable from time and time, and have been for as long as I can remember.

    • If some muslims were to have driven around the country and made our rivers so polluted they were toxic what would we call them ????

      Fucken terrorists thats what ……

      Those who say ‘the country is going in the right direction’ …. well they are telling lies ……..

      Welcome to new zealand ……………… boil all water

      and where toxic meth state houses are 4000 times safer than havelock north tap water

      • I don’t believe a post like yours adds anything to the conversation.
        Welcome to NZ…boil all water.
        What rubbish.

        • But Patrick ……….. what would you call a group of foriegners if they came to New Zealand and poisoned our rivers and fresh water ?????????

          They would be called “Terrorists” …. using chemical and biological dirty warfare against our country and environment

          Making thousands of New Zealanders sick…. and leaving some with permanent damage

          not to mention Stealing rivers and swimming spots from our young and others ….

          Boiling your water is the only way to guarantee its safety in NZ at the moment….. its gone sub prime

          • The voice of reason would say the foreign poisoning of our waterways hasn’t happened and the likelihood of it happening is practically zero, so why bang on about it.
            You are most welcome to use energy to boil all the water you drink but the other five plus million Kiwi’s won’t bother unless there is an outbreak like that in Havelock.
            Be reasonable, Reason.

    • Don’t be such a silly troll Dave – just check the ECAN website and see the reasons relate to contaminated water.

      • Oh so I have to confirm the facts of the claims by someone who is electioneering. Not even a link?. God help us.

        • So you accept politicians claim’s at their word?

          No wonder some politician’s lie and cheat and smear – some people don’t bother to check if what they say is true.

          • That is my point, No I do not accept politicians at their word. I expect them to be not lazy and provide a bit of proof to back up their claims.

            • The rivers are full of cow shit and nitrogen Dave …

              You talk a good game…….. but white disco pants and a glass of JK’s 100% degraded river water would show the true nature of your argument ….

              Which like our rivers is full of shit …………….just like your disco pants would be.

              I’d pay a $100 to watch your arsehole teach your lazy brain a lesson ……

              Some people always have to learn the hard way ….

              • There you go again. Bad language and a crude post that makes no kind of sense.
                The river Avon was polluted 100 years ago and the JK you refer to had to wait another 50 odd years until he was born.
                Should he have to accept the blame for that?
                You are not the voice of Reason.

  2. It’s concerning that the sign doesn’t specify the exact nature of the “health hazard” it warns about, nor provide a source (eg a web address) where we can look it up. However, a quick web search with the keywords “ecan waimakariri river health hazard swimming” finds:
    “swimming is not safe… downstream of the State Highway 1 bridge because of poor water quality”

    I find it concerning though, that this page does not give any information about the type(s) and source(s) of the pollutants causing this poor water quality, nor a web link to such information. I have used their feedback system to request that more detail be added to this page, along with links to the evidence ECAN used in coming to this conclusion.

    • Thanks Strypey. I assume the hazards upstream of the jet boat ramp are jetboats, the water quality concern down stream of it is a concern. I totally agree with your comments. I am surprised a Mayor want want a be did not make more of an effort with the content of his post if he really wants to be taken seriously.

      • I’d like to see you have a glass of Selwyn river water ………… so we could see you get seriously sick ……..

        Drink up some of that fecal wealth the cowboys nats have filled our rivers with ,,,, “If the pollutants that leach through our intensively farmed soils and into lowland rivers such as the Selwyn made the water run red, we’d quickly grasp the scale of the problem”

        “There are instances in New Zealand of dogs dying after drinking contaminated river water and licking algae-covered rocks. “It seems it will only be a matter of time before a child dies after ingesting some of this,” Joy predicts.”

        “Of 112 monitored lakes, a 2010 Niwa study found 44% are eutrophic – so burdened by excess agricultural nutrients that they have become murky, smelly and inhospitable to many fish, ….”

        Disco daves opinions are dirty 😉 ….. clean water is unreasonable to a nact supporter

        etc etc

        • Clean water is essential to have policies that ensure rivers meet appropriate standards has my full support.

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