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Frequently Asked Questions

How does Humboldt County monitor ocean water quality?
From April through October, the 5 beaches between McKinleyville and Trinidad are monitored weekly for 3 types of indicator bacteria. Samples are collected within the creek mouth in ankle to knee-deep surf zone water

Sampling is usually performed on Tuesdays with results available to the public on this website 2 days later. Resamples of beaches that do not meet state bacteriological standards are taken on Thursdays.

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1. When is a beach placed on warning status?
2. When is a beach closed?
3. What exactly are total coliform, fecal coliform, and enterococcus?
4. How does Humboldt County monitor ocean water quality?
5. What are indicator bacteria?
6. Does the health risk to swimmers increase as indicator bacterial levels increase?
7. How do I protect myself from illness-causing bacteria in the ocean?
8. How can I find out about the weekly sampling results?