Guidelines for California beaches after rain
After all the rain we have seen in the past week, here's what you need to know about getting in the water following rainstorms:
How long to wait - The Department of Environmental Health recommends avoiding activities such as swimming, surfing, and diving for 72 hours after it rains.
Why do you need to wait - Storm runoff picks up bacteria, fertilizers, oil, sewage, and other contaminants. That goop, muck, and sludge flows to the beach in a concentrated mass, before dispersing.
What could happen - Here's a 3 year Surfer Health Study studies detailing the risk. The study found that surfing during or after wet weather exposes the body to higher chances of gastrointestinal illness (GI), i.e. pesky bacteria capable of causing cramps, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Current conditions around The Bay Area
The Blue Water Task Force (BWTF) is the Surfrider Foundation’s volunteer-run, water testing, education and advocacy program
San Francisco Beach Water Quality monitoring program is a cooperative effort between the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission and the San Francisco Department of Public Health