More than 200 pounds of waste, including hypodermic needles, tampons, and condoms were discovered washed ashore in the sands at several Los Angeles beaches on Wednesday, resulting in closures.
As of Friday, the beaches remained closed over health concerns, as cleanup efforts continued from the previous night.
The closure affects Dockweiler, Manhattan, and El Segundo beaches and extends all the way up to Marina del Rey, according to the Los Angeles Times. Sanitation crews were reportedly busy cleaning up debris late into Thursday evening as efforts to rid the beach of the waste are amplified with the weekend approaching.
Bacteria was also reportedly found in levels that exceeded state standards but had diminished by Thursday.
Although public health officials reportedly do not know where the waste came from and are investigating its source, the nonprofit environmental group Heal the Bay speculated to the Times that the waste could be related to last week’s storm.
Heal the Bay said a net designed to catch plastic waste failed and flushed all the waste out and into the Santa Monica Bay, which then washed up onto the shores. A new net was reportedly installed Thursday to prevent such incidents from occurring in the future.
— Sanitary Owl (@SanitaryOwl) September 25, 2015