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Dye study at Pacifica State Beach

Frequently Asked Questions

What does the study entail?

Rhodamine WT dye will be released in San Pedro Creek near its discharge point into the ocean. Water will be sampled in multiple locations inside surf zone to track how the dye travels. Water sampling will last for 6 hours after the release. Dye will be released on three separate days after rain events during January V April 2013. The exact dates are to be confirmed based on weather conditions. The experiments will be conducted during the daytime.

What will it look like?

This depends on how close one is to the point of release, how long it is after the release, and the water circulation. Often, dye is not highly visible and sensitive instruments must be used to detect presence. Rhodamine WT dye is a pinkish-red color. Dont expect the beach water to change color. A small portion of the creek may turn red for a short period of time.

How long will the dye last?

This depends in part on how the circulation on the beach, wave conditions, and the stream flow rate. The dyes degrade naturally within 2 to 7 days.

Are the dyes safe?

Rhodamine is one of the most frequently used dyes in environmental studies. When released into the beach, it will immediately become diluted. Known potential adverse reactions occur only with direct contact at high concentrations. Because of the rapid dilution of the dye, exposure to the dye at its full strength will be very unlikely. Refer to Material Safety Data Sheet for more information about the dye.

Where should I do if humans or animals get in contact with the dye?

Unprotected contact of the dye at undiluted concentration may cause eye irritation and slight skin irritation in sensitive individuals. In the unlikely event of unprotected eye contact, immediately rinse with flow water for at least 15 minutes while holding eyelids open. For skin contact, wash affected area with soap and rinse with plenty of water. Refer to Material Safety Data Sheet for details and get immediate medical attention.

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