LA County officials say to avoid prolonged outdoor activities in the Carson area


CARSON – Los Angeles County officials have been working together since October 6 to investigate and address the pungent odor affecting communities in the Dominguez Canal area in the city of Carson.

A multi-agency response, including the county’s public works, public health, fire and emergency management departments, as well as the South Coast Air Quality Management District, has been mobilized in response to this incident and to provide prompt assistance to residents. and the businesses that have been affected.

The South Coast Air Quality Management District said on Tuesday it had set up a web page to monitor the foul odor emanating from the Dominguez Canal that has made some residents sick and sparked numerous complaints.

To date, South Coast AQMD has responded to over 2,000 odor complaints since the pungent odor was first reported on October 3.

Congresswoman Nanette Diaz Barragán, whose 44th Congressional District includes the affected areas, in her October 18 letter called on California Governor Gavin Newsom to declare a state of emergency in the region.

On October 15, LA County Public Works maintenance crews began spraying a natural, water-based, biodegradable deodorant into the canal to neutralize the odor. The community should expect a noticeable reduction in odor within 3-5 days.

The source continues to be viewed as naturally decaying organic material (vegetation and marine life) at the bottom and sides of the English Channel at Carson. As air monitoring in surrounding areas continues, no other point sources of hydrogen sulfide have been identified. South Coast AQMD, County Fire Hazardous Materials (HazMat) and Public Health continue to assess and monitor hydrogen sulfide concentrations and mitigate health impacts.

A bubbling system is being installed today to inject millions of tiny oxygen bubbles into the water to increase dissolved oxygen levels and prevent the creation of hydrogen sulfide gas additional.

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has updated health recommendations for residents affected by reported odors in Carson and surrounding communities to avoid prolonged outdoor activities between 9 p.m. and 8 a.m. based on trends observed with air monitoring results and whenever odors are strong to reduce exposure.

As efforts to get rid of the odor continue, Public Health recommends that residents take the following steps to reduce their exposure and symptoms they experience and to protect their health, that of their family and that of their pets. :

  1. If symptoms are life threatening, seek medical attention immediately.
  2. If symptoms persist, are worrying, or worsen, see a doctor. Move to another location until the smells are gone. For assistance, call 2-1-1.
  3. Avoid prolonged outdoor activities between 9 p.m. and 8 a.m. and whenever odors are strong to reduce exposure.
  4. Keep doors and windows closed as much as possible to prevent outside odors from entering the home or business. Ventilate the home / business in the absence of odors.
  5. If residents have a central heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system, contact an air conditioning specialist, if necessary, to determine if the air filters in the system can be replaced with a high-performance air filter. efficiency (HEPA) or MERV. activated carbon filters (carbon) to improve indoor air quality. If residents notice that smells are stronger or symptoms worsen in the late evening or early morning (9 p.m. to 7 a.m.), residents should try to run their central HVAC system through the night, s ‘they haven’t already. It may be better to move temporarily if that doesn’t help.
  6. Use a HEPA certified portable indoor air filter with activated carbon to improve the air quality in their home. If residents notice that the odors are stronger or that symptoms worsen in the late evening or early morning (9 p.m. to 7 a.m.), residents should try to run their portable indoor air filter through the night, if they haven’t already. It may be better to move temporarily if that doesn’t help.
  7. Keep animals indoors. If residents notice any of the following symptoms in their pets, they should contact their local veterinarian: difficulty breathing, vomiting, lethargy, or nausea.

Hydrogen sulfide is a colorless gas that has a very strong odor (like “rotten egg”). Its odor can be detected and cause mild to moderate temporary symptoms even below the minimum detection limit of 1 part per million (ppm) or 1000 parts per billion (ppb) of typical equipment used to detect it. Everyone should take steps to reduce their exposure when odors are present.

People who have persistent, worrying, or worsening symptoms from odor are encouraged to contact their health care providers, especially if they have chronic health conditions. People should also make sure they have enough supplies of their medications, especially if they have heart or lung problems. In addition, Public Health recommends temporarily leaving the area where odors are present to mitigate the impact on health.

For more information on protective measures to prevent odors from entering the home, residents can contact the community public health line at 626-430-9821 and leave a message with their contact details and their call will be returned. The message line will be checked hourly between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. daily as long as the odors persist.

If you live in or near the Carson or West Carson areas, County Public Works has a reimbursement program for the purchase of HVAC air filters, portable HEPA air filters, or for a temporary move. during this manifestation of public nuisance. Please review the recommendations and tips on “Air cleaners and filters to improve indoor air quality and eliminate odors” below before purchasing filters. Visit for more information on the reimbursement program. Residents can click here to request a refund. For help, they can call 2-1-1.

Additionally, residents should continue to call South Coast AQMD to report odors at 1-800-CUT-SMOG (1-800-288-7644) or use the agency’s online complaint system.


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