City officials warn residents not to go into bacteria-laden ocean water after heavy rains

Long Beach officials are advising residents not to go swimming in ocean water after a storm dumped a little over a half an inch of rain on the city as of noon Thursday.

“After any significant rainfall (0.10 inches or more), high levels of bacteria from storm drains, rivers and polluted runoff enter into our ocean,” the advisory, from City Health Officer Dr. Anissa Davis, said. “It is recommended to avoid all ocean water contact for at least 72 hours after a rainfall, especially at storm drain outlets, river mouths, streams and lagoons.”

Crews pull out what’s collected at the end of the trash boom at the mouth of the L.A. River in Long Beach November 29, 2018. A rainstorm came through Southern California as crews attempt to keep up with the trash that is collected at the end of the river. Photo by Thomas R Cordova

UPDATE: City Hall reopened after flooding closes part of lobby

The city got a brief reprieve from the rain until it started up again at 5 p.m. with breezy winds. According to the National Weather Service, the rain is expected to continue until at least 8 p.m. Light scattered showers are expected tonight.

Crews were working throughout the day on Thursday clearing trash and debris that collected at the mouth of the LA River before it goes into the ocean.

The Department of Health and Human Services will continue to monitor the water quality and bacterial content of the beach.

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Valerie Osier is a breaking news and crime reporter for the Long Beach Post. She’s a Riverside native who found her love for journalism while at community college. She graduated from Cal State University, Long Beach journalism program in 2017 and covered the Palos Verdes Peninsula for the Daily Breeze prior to coming to the Post. She lives in Long Beach with her husband, Steven, and her cat/child, Jones.