Rain fell steadily in San Diego throughout the day. Photo by Chris Stone

Environmental health officials Tuesday urged swimmers and surfers to stay out of the coastal beaches and bays following recent rain in the county.

The San Diego County Department of Environmental Health and Quality issued a general rain advisory warning of increased bacteria levels from urban runoff in the ocean and bay waters — especially near storm drains, creeks, rivers and lagoon outlets.

“Urban runoff may contain large amounts of bacteria from a variety of sources such as animal waste, soil, and decomposing vegetation,” the DEHQ’s Ricardo Ramos wrote. “Bacteria levels can remain elevated after a rainstorm depending upon the intensity of the storm, volume of runoff and ocean conditions.”

Water contact should be avoided for 72 hours after rainfall, according to the department.

–City News Service

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