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County of Los Angeles
Department of Public Health
Environmental Health
5050 Commerce Drive
Baldwin Park, CA 91706
(888) 700-9995

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Ocean Monitoring - Beaches

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The Recreational Waters Program routinely collects ocean water samples every Monday at 40 sampling sites extending from the Ventura/Los Angeles County border to south of the Redondo Beach pier. In addition, five samples are collected at Avalon Beach on Catalina from April through October. Samples are collected in the surf zone and analyzed by the Department of Public Health laboratory for total coliform, E. coli and enterococcus bacteria.

We also monitor and review ocean water monitoring results from the Los Angeles City, Bureau of Sanitation, Hyperion treatment plant and the Los Angeles County Sanitation District. The Hyperion

treatment plant's laboratory makes available to our program, daily bacteriological data for 10 shore stations and weekly bacteriological data for 34 shore stations. The Los Angeles County Sanitation District makes available, weekly bacteriological data for 8 shore stations. Water is analyzed for total coliform, fecal coliform, and enterococcus bacteria.

Beaches are posted with warning signs when bacteria levels exceed State ocean water quality standards. Beaches remain posted with warning signs until tests indicate that bacteria levels meet State standards.

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Beaches are closed when a suspected or real sewage discharge to ocean waters occurs or elevated bacteriological levels can be linked to a known sewage discharge. Samples are collected from the affected areas and the beaches are kept closed until sampling data indicates that bacteria levels meet State standards.

A rain advisory is issued anytime there is significant rainfall that may cause bacterial levels to exceed State standards in ocean waters. The advisory stays in effect for 72 hours after rainfall has ended.

We investigate complaints of beach sanitation, illegal discharges, sewage spills and areas of high chronic bacteria levels.

Beach Advisory and Closure Hotline 1-800-525-5662

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Deputy Director for
Health Protection
Angelo J. Bellomo
Los Angeles County Seal: Enriching lives through effective and caring services