Stay Informed: Daily Beach Water Quality Predictions Now Available Online

Daily Beach Water Quality Predictions Are Now Online 

For the tenth straight summer, Heal the Bay is posting daily water quality predictions for California beaches on our Beach Report Card with NowCast. To make these predictions, we use computer models that examine correlations between environmental conditions (such as temperature, rain, and tide) and historical bacteria concentrations. Our NowCast models then predict with high accuracy how much bacteria could be present in the water given the current local conditions at the beach.  

Surfers’ Beach, San Mateo (Photo: Visit Half Moon Bay)

A day at the beach should not make anyone sick. That’s why health officials across the state monitor water quality at the beach every week during the summer. When officials detect high levels of bacteria, they issue a public health advisory. However, by the time traditional water quality samples are processed, a minimum of 18-24 hours have passed, making the information outdated. With samples taken only once every 7 days, a weekly water quality grade may not provide the most useful or updated information since water quality can fluctuate rapidly. Heal the Bay believes that we need daily water quality information to better protect public health – our NowCast program does exactly that, issuing daily water quality information for 14 beaches this summer.  

NowCast predictions appear on the Beach Report Card website and app with the symbols below. A Blue “W+” symbol indicates a low risk of illness from water contact, while a Red “W-” symbol indicates a high risk of illness. 

 Good Water Quality        Poor Water Quality 


Head to to find daily predictions for 14 beaches across California. Or download our free app on your iOS or Android device to get daily predictions on the go.  

We are excited to announce the 14 beaches in our NowCast program for 2024:

  1. Dockweiler (Imperial Hwy.), Los Angeles County 
  2. Dockweiler (Toes), Los Angeles County 
  3. Manhattan (28th St.), Los Angeles County 
  4. Redondo Breakwater (Herondo Storm Drain), Los Angeles County 
  5. Torrance Beach (Avenue I), Los Angeles County 
  6. Newport Beach (38th St.), Orange County 
  7. Newport Beach (52nd St.), Orange County 
  8. East Beach (Sycamore Creek), Santa Barbara County 
  9. Rio Del Mar, Santa Cruz County 
  10. Oceanside (San Luis Rey River Outlet), San Diego County 
  11. Morro Bay (Atascadero Rd.), San Luis Obispo County 
  12. Linda Mar Beach (San Pedro Creek), San Mateo County 
  13. Surfers Beach, San Mateo County 
  14. C Street (Promenade Park), Ventura County  

Newport Beach (Photo: Visit California)

You may notice we do not have as many beaches in NowCast this year as we have had in previous years. This is due to the decline in accuracy with our current linear models, which struggle to keep up with the increasing weather anomalies, changing environmental conditions, and unusual bacterial data patterns we’ve seen in recent years. Consequently, we did not provide NowCast predictions for this past winter. Heal the Bay is in the process of reconstructing our environmental and bacteria database and we plan to develop new and improved prediction models this year. We hope to secure the necessary funding to enhance our model’s accuracy and provide more precise predictions for more beaches in the future. 

Dockweiler Beach (Photo: LA County)

Don’t see your beach on the map? Let us know if you have a beach we should consider for NowCast — we are continually refining and expanding this program and hope to cover more beaches in the future. Predicting water quality is complex and we want to make sure we get it right. This means we need access to a myriad of data sources to make accurate predictions, and when data are not readily available, we can’t make the prediction.


Communities looking to bring daily water quality predictions to their favorite beach spots can advocate for this cause in the following ways: 

  • Advocate at town halls and city council meetings for increased funding toward ocean and environmental data observation, collection, standardization, and analysis programs. 
  • Support Heal the Bay’s staff scientists’ efforts to expand monitoring programs and directly fund our work. 
  • Stay informed about your local water quality and reach out to your representatives in California demanding improvements be made to protect public health and our natural environment. 


If you can’t find NowCast predictions in your area, you can see the latest water quality grades issued to over 500 beaches on the Beach Report Card Website. In the meantime, we are working to improve and expand the NowCast system, so check back to see if your favorite beach has water quality predictions.