A four-mile stretch of beach in Long Beach that was closed after tar balls washed ashore on Wednesday afternoon was reopened this morning, authorities said.
The beach was closed about 4 p.m. Wednesday from First Place to 72nd Place, Long Beach Fire Department spokesman Jake Heflin said. The beach was reopened about 8 a.m. today, Heflin said.
“The Long Beach Fire Department asks that residents and visitors be mindful of the events over the last few days, and take extra precaution when walking on the beach or swimming in local waters,” Heflin said.
Crews cleaned up the “unidentified petroleum-based product” and collected samples that are being tested, Heflin said. The origin of the substance has not been determined, he said.
Anyone seeing oil debris should report the information directly replica watches to the National Response Center hotline, (800) 424-8802, officials said.
Heflin said on Thursday that a pelican was found saturated with oil and was cared for by animal control workers. A sea lion was seen on a breakwater in the ocean, possibly contaminated by oil, but it swam away.
Authorities were working to determine if the tar balls are related to the oil spill north of Santa Barbara May 19. There is no indication the incident is related to any Long Beach Gas and Oil operations, Heflin said.
Meanwhile, officials in Seal Beach, located just south of Long Beach, said Thursday that tar balls were spotted on the shoreline near Neptune Avenue and Anderson Street, but no beach closures were ordered.
The tar balls washing ashore in Long Beach came two days after large globs of tar washed ashore in Zuma Beach. Nearly all beaches from El Segundo to Redondo Beach were closed from May 27 to May 29 because tar balls washed ashore. The source of the globs has not been identified.