Rain brings urban runoff to county beaches: 300 Forward St. in La Jolla/Bird Rock has drain at the street’s end

On Wednesday, Dec. 3 San Diego Coastkeeper published a list of the top 10 locations in San Diego County to witness the number one water quality pollution problem: urban runoff.

They are:

  1. 2306 S. Coast Highway: Open channel dumping onto the beach
  2. 300 Forward Street in La Jolla/Bird Rock: Drain at the street’s end
  3. Tourmaline Surf Park: Channelized stormwater outlet meets popular surf spot
  4. Coast Boulevard Park: Cement pipe at ocean’s edge
  5. Cottonwood Creek at Moonlight State Beach: Storm Drain opening
  6. San Dieguito River Park Stormwater treatment lagoon: Treatment wetland in action
  7. Tecolote Shores, Mission Beach: Creek emptying into man-made bay
  8. Dog Beach, Ocean Beach: The mouth of our region’s namesake river
  9. 3001 Harbor Drive: Trash moves from land to sea
  10. Dairy Mart Road: Binational polluted runoff

The heaviest downpours are expected to begin in the mid- to late afternoon, Wednesday, Dec. 3 according to meteorologists. Total precipitation from the storm is expected to range from 1 to 2.5 inches in coastal and valley areas, and from 2 to 4 inches in the mountains.
The Department of Environmental Health has issued a General Advisory for the coastal waters of San Diego County due to recent rainfall.

Swimmers, surfers, and other ocean users are warned that levels of bacteria can rise significantly in ocean and bay waters, especially near storm drains, creeks, rivers, and lagoon outlets that discharge urban runoff. Urban runoff may contain large amounts of bacteria from a variety of sources such as animal waste, soil, and decomposing vegetation.

While many coastal storm drains within San Diego County are permanently posted with white metal warning signs, additional temporary warning signs are not posted for General Advisories. Activities such as swimming, surfing and diving should be avoided in all coastal waters for 72 hours following rain. This includes all coastal beaches and all of Mission Bay and San Diego Bay. Elevated bacteria levels can persist after a rainstorm depending upon the intensity of the storm, volume of runoff and ocean and current conditions.

Tijuana Slough National Wildlife Refuge and Border Field Park

A water contact closure is currently in place for the ocean shoreline at the Tijuana Slough National Wildlife Refuge and Border Field Park due to sewage-contaminated flows from the Tijuana River entering the United States. Signs will remain in place until sample results indicate the ocean water is safe for recreational use.