July 28, 2008

Naples Swim Canceled, Local Beaches Closed After Sewage Spill

By Kelly Puente, Press-Telegram, Long Beach, Calif.

Jul. 27--LONG BEACH -- The annual Naples Island Swim competition was canceled Sunday and four Alamitos Bay area beaches remained closed after 12,000 gallons of raw sewage spilled into Spinnaker Bay late Saturday morning.

Mother's Beach, Marine Stadium, Colorado Lagoon and Alamitos Bay are closed to swimming and other water-based recreational activities until further notice, said Nelson Kerr of the Long Beach Department of Health and Human Service's Bureau of Environmental Health.

Kerr said the water quality will be tested today. If the bacterial levels are determined to be safe, the beaches could reopen by Tuesday or Wednesday, he said.

Naples Island Swim organizers said the competition will be rescheduled for sometime next month.

For now, swimming and other activities that involve direct bodily contact with the water are prohibited. Activities such as boating, kayaking and sunning on the sand are still allowed.

The beaches were closed Saturday afternoon when a backed-up sewage line near the corner of Bellflower Boulevard and Eliot Street caused raw sewage to flow from a manhole directly into Spinnaker Bay, said Long Beach Lifeguard Capt. Louie Martinet.

Kerr said the spill was substantial considering the area.

"Anything more than 10,000 gallons is significant," he said.

Closure signs have been posted at all affected beach areas.

For more information call the Health Department's Water Quality Information

Line at 562-570-4199 or visit their website at www.longbeach.gov/health.

[email protected], 562-499-1305


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Copyright (c) 2008, Press-Telegram, Long Beach, Calif.

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