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The Ocean Water Quality Monitoring Program found water at Rincon failing to meet state standard for bacteria in a report released Wednesday afternoon. Photo: Dan LeMaitre


The Inertia

The Ventura County Environmental Health Division released a statement in March of this year that two local beaches were experiencing bacterial problems in their water: Rincon Beach (south of creek) and San Buenaventura State Beach at San Jon Road. In a follow-up, the Ocean Water Quality Monitoring Report revealed this week that Rincon’s water still isn’t meeting state standards for water quality.

“Warning signs have been posted and contact with the ocean water should be avoided for a minimum of 50 yards on either side of each posted sign,” a release said. “Warning signs will remain posted until ocean water quality meets State standards. Any items that may have come in contact with ocean water should be avoided. If contact occurs, wash thoroughly with soap and water.”

That recommendation includes not eating any shellfish that may have come from Ventura County beaches, they said, as it may have been exposed to the contamination.

“Rincon has a history of failing,” Paolo Quinto, a representative of the Ocean Quality Monitoring Program told The Inertia. “It always changes. Sometimes it can fail for up to two weeks and sometimes even less than that. But there has been a trend over the last year with Rincon failing.”

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Quinto added that the exact source of contamination still isn’t clear. Urban runoff and possible failed septic systems nearby while the creek flows into the ocean are obvious guesses, but he said a review of houses with septic systems in the area have been checked and are clear. In the meantime, the Ocean Water Monitoring Program will be taking weekly bacteria samples of Ventura County beaches with the results made available online along with an interactive map displaying readings for all Ventura County beaches.

The Ocean Water Quality Monitoring Program’s interactive map displays Ventura County beaches, with Rincon as the only red plot point in the area not meeting state standards for water quality. Photo: Ocean Water Quality Monitoring Program

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