PLAYA VISTA (CBSLA) – Another storm is headed to the Southland, and it’s bringing more than just rain to the area.
Los Angeles County lifeguards said there’s too much trash and chemicals in the ocean for surfers and swimmers to be safe, warning beach-goers to stay out of the water.
Residents in Playa Vista Monday were bracing for a wave of trash that’s expected to rush toward the ocean as the city’s waterways will fill up with water and garbage. Experts say after any given storm, up to 60 tons of trash can dump into the ocean along L.A.’s coast.
When it storms, along with the rainwater, tons of contamination goes down storm drains and rushes into in channels, like Ballona Creek.
Pubic Works crews were busy along the creek Monday, working to pick up trash.
Lucy Han is a community advocate whose nonprofit, Friends of the Jungle, is pushing for L.A. to get some help from a solar-powered trash wheel like “Mr. Trash Wheel” in Baltimore, which funnels garbage into a floating dumpster. It can collect up to 1 million pounds of trash a year.
“There’s trash all along the creek, there’s trash on our beaches, and it’s endangering humans and wildlife,” Han said.
That’s why her group wants the city or the county to apply for a $2 million state grant to buy a trash wheel machine. Newport Beach won a grant last year and is on its way to installing one there. The application is due in two weeks.
“Why can’t L.A. have one?” Han said. “It’s a safety hazard to have all these pollutants floating around our beaches. We have plenty of problems with our beaches, now there’s trash all over the beaches. We’re in the Ballona ecological – there’s endangered species here.”