A general advisory has been issued for the coastal waters of San Diego County due to urban runoff from the recent rain, the Department of Environmental Health announced Saturday.
According to the Department, swimmers, surfers and others who might use the ocean are warned that levels of bacteria can rise significantly in ocean and bay waters, particularly near storm drains, creeks, rivers and lagoon outlets that discharge urban runoff.
This runoff could contain large amounts of bacteria from sources such as animal waste, soil and decomposing vegetation.
To prevent contact with the runoff, the Department says activities like swimming, surfing and diving should be avoided in all coastal waters for 72 hours following the rain.
This includes all local beaches, Mission Bay and San Diego Bay.
Additionally, the County of San Diego Department of Environmental Health has expanded the water contact closure area at the Tijuana Slough National Wildlife Refuge shoreline north to include the Imperial Beach shoreline.
The Imperial Beach water contact closure includes north to Carnation Avenue, including Camp Surf.
Due to the season’s rainfall, runoff contaminated by sewage in the Tijuana River has been entering the Tijuana Estuary. The Department believes northward moving ocean currents could contaminate ocean water in Imperial Beach, prompting the water contact closure.
Signs warning of the sewage contaminated water will be displayed until field tests indicate the ocean water is safe for recreational use.
For updates on beach closure information, call the 24-hour hotline at (619) 338-2073.
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