2009-10 Annual Beach Report Card Shows Dry Weather Water Quality Grades on Rise
California beachgoers enjoyed very good-to-excellent water quality in 2009-10 during dry weather, according to Heal the Bay's 20th annual Beach Report Card, released on May 26, 2010. Heal the Bay assigned A-to-F letter grades to 326 beaches along the California coast, based on levels of weekly bacterial pollution reported from April 2009 through March 2010. Some 294 beaches, or 90%, received A or B dry-weather grades, a 5% jump from the reporting period in 2008-09. Only 20 beaches (6%) monitored statewide received D or F grades during dry weather. High bacteria counts at these sites are linked to such potential illnesses as stomach flu, ear infections and major skin rashes. Los Angeles County leads the annual Beach Bummer List, with five locations in the ranking of the state’s most polluted beaches.