Environment & Science

Long Beach waters remain closed after sewage spill

View of the ocean near the Port of Long Beach.
View of the ocean near the Port of Long Beach.
Maya Sugarman/KPCC

Coastal waters in Long Beach remain closed Saturday due to high levels of bacteria from a sewage spill.

A San Gabriel sewer line ruptured earlier this week sending thousands of gallons of raw sewage flowing through the L.A. River and into the Pacific.

Long Beach Health Department is testing the water daily. Saturday’s test showed it is still unsafe for people to have contact with the water, though people can still go on the beach, Nelson Kerr, manager of Long Beach Health Department’s bureau of environmental health, told KPCC.

“We will get the beaches open as soon as it is safe but at this point we still have levels of concern in terms of bacteria,” said Kerr.

Open coastal waters are the areas of concern, so the bay, Colorado Lagoon and Marine Stadium remain open.

The bacteria levels are steadily coming down, said Kerr, who noted beaches closest to the L.A. River are looking “pretty good” with standard levels but beaches toward Seal Beach still have high levels of bacteria.

Officials hope to consider reopening the coastal waters by Monday or Tuesday.