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The Lancer Link

News for the Carlsbad High School Community

The Lancer Link

News for the Carlsbad High School Community

The Lancer Link

Toxic tides

Why swimming in the ocean after a rain storm could affect your health
Drake Pisarczyk

With all of the recent rains in California, people have been wanting to get back out there and breathe in the ocean. But they do not know if it’s safe or not. Take a look into the perspective of some of the surfers who go out there whether rain or shine.

According to DHEC, heavy rain can cause bacteria to run off from urban areas into the ocean. The pollutants from the sidewalk and street include oils, microplastics and bacteria that can be toxic and cause illness.

“Other surfers told me that I was lucky that I didn’t get sick because all of the water from the streets and highways had bacteria from the drains,” freshman Ashby Krause said. “After the rain, the ocean has bacteria, exposing yourself to all that bacteria and gross stuff.”

Krause went surfing in the rain, and the next day, he got a cold. According to Blue Water Task Force most people should stay out of the ocean for 32 to 72 hours after heavy rain due to the fact that it can increase the likelihood of illness.

“I don’t think it’s safe to go surfing after the rain unless [the swell is] good, but I have done it before, and I got kind of sick,” Krause said. “I would not do it again because I felt really bad and I couldn’t hang out for a whole week.”

There are a lot of mixed opinions on whether it is safe to go in the water after it rains. Unlike Krause, freshman Cooper Asbury didn’t think it was dangerous to go in the ocean after the rain and has never gotten ill because of it.

“I don’t think it’s dangerous to go in the ocean after rain because you usually have better surf,” Asbury said. “I’ve never gotten sick after surfing in the rain, which I do a lot.”

SurferToday shows that 12 in every 1000 people that go in the water after the rain get sick. Waiting just three days after a heavy rain storm can drastically reduce the risk of getting sick after surfing. Asbury believes that especially those who have a weaker immune system should follow this rule.

“When I was surfing once, my friend got a bacterial disease and it took him [a few days to recover] which kind of scared me and made me stop surfing after the rain for a little while,” Asbury said. “So maybe if you don’t have like the best immune system then you shouldn’t be going and water after it rains, but if you are pretty healthy, you should be fine.”

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About the Contributor
Drake Pisarczyk
Drake Pisarczyk, Reporter
Drake Pisarczyk is a basketball player and this is his first year in journalism. He loves everything that involves the ocean.

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