Health

Beach Storm Drains Getting New Signs

San Diego County’s beaches are getting a public safety face-lift — new warning signs to keep visitors from wading in the water around storm drains.

The County’s Department of Environmental Health has purchased 86 new signs to replace older, faded, out-of-date, or just plain missing signs and is working with local cities to install them at beach inlets, lagoon and creek mouths.

Environmental health has provided the signs for years to warn people that storm drains at beaches deliver “urban runoff” water — rainfall, or irrigation water from those out-of-control sprinklers in neighborhoods countywide — that can carry bacteria, pollution and trash from our local watersheds to the ocean, bays and waterways.

Warning signs are needed because storm drains at beaches are often tempting places for people to play in and around because runoff water is often warmer than the water in the ocean.

Officials said they noticed recently that some beach warning signs were in poor shape. The new signs will be treated with an ultraviolet coating to help keep the information printed on them from fading in the sunlight.

San Diego County’s environmental health department also conducts routine water-quality monitoring at County beaches and bays to help protect the public.

Gig Conaughton is a communications specialist with the County of San Diego Communications Office. Contact