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By Alicia Robinson | October 6, 2006
Testing methods could be leading water-quality experts to post bacteria warnings at clean beaches, new research from Orange County's Newport Beach water-quality lab shows. The research describes how "biofilms" can foster the growth of the bacteria that water-quality testers look for. The bacteria are supposed to indicate the presence of sewage, but scientists found they may also grow naturally in the environment. Donna Ferguson, who supervises the Orange County Health Care Agency's water-quality lab on Shellmaker Island, will present the lab's findings next week at a national Environmental Protection Agency conference in New York.
NEWS
November 25, 2003
Deepa Bharath The Orange County Healthcare Agency posted warning signs at an unprecedented number of local beaches on Sunday to caution the public about high levels of bacteria in the water possibly caused by tide patterns, officials said. Health officials instructed Newport Beach Lifeguards to post the signs along the coast late Sunday morning after they got back results of the water quality tests, said Monica Mazur, environmental health supervising specialist with the Orange County Healthcare Agency.
NEWS
January 18, 2002
The Orange County Health Care Agency announced two warnings to swimmers and divers at locations in West Newport. The agency posted warning signs Thursday at Grant Street and Lancaster Street at the Newport Slough. The two beaches abut the Santa Ana River. The agency, which announced the warnings at 5 p.m. Thursday, put the signs in place after discovering heightened levels of bacteria in the water during routine testing. The bacteria counts, which must be under state-mandated levels, are caused by the increased presence of human or animal waste from urban runoff.
LOCAL
By Kelly Strodl | January 25, 2008
A number of local beaches within Newport Harbor recently have scored dangerously low for unhealthy bacteria levels in the Newport Harbor and bay areas, officials said. It’s possible the pollution is runoff from the Santiago Canyon Fires, but Orange County Health Agency and Heal the Bay researchers have not yet determined the culprit. If you’re interested in following the research, once the health department collects the data, analysts from Heal the Bay put it into a user-friendly format online called Beach Report Cards.
NEWS
July 21, 2001
The Orange County Health Care Agency posted warning signs at Newport Slough on Thursday evening. The agency put up the warnings at Lancaster Street after discovering traces of bacteria that exceeded the state's permitted standards. The bacteria is thought to be present in animal waste, which can be found in urban runoff. The warnings suggest swimmers and boaters stay out of the water in the area. The postings will remain until the bacteria drops to acceptable levels.
NEWS
January 5, 2001
In its search for the root of the beach-water bacteria problems, the Orange County Sanitation District on Thursday announced another battery of tests. While the Fountain Valley-based agency will focus its efforts on the Huntington Beach shoreline, which has been hit with a rash of beach closures, some testing will also be done off the coast of Newport Beach. The agency, in trying to pinpoint the cause of the bacteria, is expected to spend about $75,000 for each testing round.
NEWS
February 6, 2002
The Orange County Health Care Agency put up health warnings at two Newport Beach beaches Tuesday. The agency issued the warnings at 3:30 p.m. The area 300 feet on the north end of the Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort's swimming lagoon and at De Anza Ramp at Pearson's Port in the lower Back Bay were fitted with hazard signs. Swimmers and divers are warned to stay away from the water because it has shown heightened levels of bacteria, which are usually found in human and animal waste in urban runoff.
NEWS
July 14, 2001
Paul Clinton NEWPORT BEACH -- The Orange County Sanitation District has launched a major study that could help pinpoint whether bacteria reaches the beach during a sewage spill in Upper Newport Bay. "It's going to look at, if there's a spill in the watershed, how the bacteria reaches the beach," district spokeswoman Lisa Lawson said. Many sewage spills that occur in the bay cause bacteria to flow into the Santa Ana River and down to the beach off the Newport Slough.
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NEWS
September 27, 2013
County health officials warned swimmers and others to stay away from the water at Newport's Little Corona Beach this week. Although the beach remained open, signs posted Thursday warned of elevated bacteria levels that could cause sickness. Water at the beach is tested weekly to make sure it meets safety standards, said Larry Honeybourne, of the Orange County Health Care Agency. "Occasionally, for whatever reason, we may get a sample result that exceeds the state limits," Honeybourne said.
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NEWS
By Jill Cowan | December 27, 2012
Orange County environmental health officials warned local swimmers this week to avoid contact with ocean water, especially in spots close to storm drains, creeks and rivers. A rain advisory is in effect for the entire Orange County coast, including Newport Beach, Laguna Beach and Huntington Beach, after runoff from this week's storm caused elevated bacteria levels. The advisory, which is intended to reach recreational ocean, bay and harbor users, went into effect after more than two-tenths of an inch of rain fell, Orange County Health Care Agency Water Quality Supervisor Mike Fennessy said.
NEWS
By Mike Reicher | January 30, 2012
NEWPORT BEACH — The Irvine Co. was responsible for monitoring urban runoff into a protected stretch of the Pacific north of Crystal Cove, until the Newport Beach City Council voted last week for the city to assume the responsibility. The change will cost the city $10,000 per year, but officials say it partly compensates the Irvine Co. for installing and maintaining a nearby public wastewater pump station. For decades, the Irvine Co. and local governments have been working out water quality protections between Corona del Mar and Laguna Beach.
NEWS
From The Los Angeles Times | January 19, 2012
Human tears are thought to be unique in the animal kingdom, in that they're often tied to our emotional state - but that's not the only special property they possess. Proteins in tears can protect against harmful bacteria, and now a team of UC Irvine researchers has shown how. Lysozymes are antiseptic proteins found in a number of bodily fluids, including tears. Their anti-bacterial properties were first identified by Nobel laureate Alexander Fleming, discoverer of penicillin, in the 1920s, but it was unclear how these proteins could take out bacteria much bigger than them.
LOCAL
November 17, 2009
The Orange County Health Agency has issued a warning that areas of Newport Harbor recently showed levels of bacteria that fail health standards. The coastline stretching 150 feet up and down the area between 15th and 16th streets had unsafe bacteria levels, according to a weekend test, the county’s website, OCBeachInfo.com , showed. In Newport Harbor, the 33rd Street Channel at the end of 33rd Street and the Sapphire Avenue beach on the south side of Balboa Island showed unsafe bacterial levels, the county reported.
NEWS
By Brianna Bailey | August 5, 2009
A new study from a national environmental organization has found higher levels of bacteria in Newport Harbor and Upper Newport Bay than in the city’s surrounding coastal waters, but city and county officials say the water in the bay isn’t likely to make swimmers sick. The report from the Natural Resources Defense Council analyzed water quality results from beaches around the country. While the report found bacteria was a problem in some spots on Newport Bay, it probably isn’t from human waste, which could make a person ill, said Newport Beach Assistant City Manager Dave Kiff.
NEWS
By Joseph Serna | July 30, 2009
There were 59 beach closures or advisories in Newport Beach in 2008, according to a report released this week from the Natural Resources Defense Council. Of those advisories and closures, the report shows that an overwhelming number were from bacteria polluting the water, usually from an unknown source. Most closures and advisories were in the harbor and Back Bay, which a majority of official and unofficial storm drains empty into. Streets near the mouth of the Santa Ana River showed frequent problems, such as Grant Street, which saw four closures or advisories last year from bacteria.
NEWS
By Joseph Serna | May 21, 2009
Choosing when to dive into the waters off Newport Beach is as simple a choice as black and white, or in this case, wet and dry. When the weather is dry, which is almost year-round, Newport Beach’s ocean and harbor water quality is great. But when it rains, it’s a complete health hazard, according to a report recently released by the Heal the Bay environmental group, which rated beach water quality statewide. “Newport Beach’s waters, just like greater Orange County, showed very good to excellent water quality during dry weather this last year,” said Mike Grimmer, an environmental data analyst with Heal the Bay. “On wet weather days, you want to stay out of the water for at least three days.
NEWS
By Alan Blank | February 9, 2009
Weekend showers are over, but rainy weather could return to the area as early as Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service. “[Today] we should just have some clouds sticking around for decoration,” according to forecaster Stan Wasowski. There is a slight chance of rain Wednesday and a greater possibility of showers Friday and Saturday, Wasowski said. Over the weekend, the central coast of Orange County received 1.4 inches of rain as measured at John Wayne Airport.
NEWS
By Brianna Bailey | November 13, 2008
Newport Beach officials are drafting an ordinance that could limit how long boats may be anchored off Corona del Mar State Beach. A few recent water quality readings from the waters off Corona del Mar showed high levels of bacteria, and several boats have ended up adrift in the area, smashing into the rocks and washing up on the beach. The growing number of boats anchored off Corona del Mar State Beach has turned the area into a “floating RV park,” Councilwoman Nancy Gardner said.
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