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A Guide to Beach Closures Around the U.S.

July 28, 2002|Jane Engle

Wondering whether it's safe to swim at the beach you plan to visit on your next trip? Check the Internet before going.

Two environmental groups this month began posting beach closures around the U.S. on their Web sites, www.earth911.org and www.oceana.org.

The information is filed by the patchwork of county, municipal and state departments that monitor beaches in various locales, said Jackie Savitz, director of the pollution campaign for Oceana, a year-old private, nonprofit group based in Washington, D.C., that promotes ocean conservation. "The plan is ultimately to cover the whole [U.S.] marine coast," she added.

Several hundred beaches were included in the program as of last week, said Alexia Emmermann, spokeswoman for Earth 911, a Phoenix-based clearinghouse for environmental data. In California, only beaches in San Diego and San Francisco counties were listed; data from other counties is planned, organizers said.

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