Rotten egg smell spreads across Southern California, AQMD now investigating the Salton Sea

By on Sep 11, 2012 in Environment, United States, Weird Comments

A rotten egg smell spread across Southern California on Monday, September 10, 2012, and South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) said that they are already doing a thorough investigation to locate its source, with the Salton Sea being one of them.

rotten eggs

Rotten eggs
Image Credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

According to AQMD on its official website that day, around 200 complaints of the rotten egg smell arrived to their office, and most callers came from the Coachella Valley and other portions of Riverside County, as well as San Bernardino and Los Angeles counties, with only few calls coming from Orange County.

As noted in the report, AQMD have already deployed field inspectors that day to Banning, La Quinta, Long Beach, Colton, San Bernardino, San Fernando Valley, Riverside, Perris, Temecula, Palm Springs, as well as to the Salton Sea, a saltwater lake that measures around 376 sq. miles and about 150 miles southeast of Los Angeles.

“Several factors indicate that the Salton Sea may have been the source of these odors. However we do not have any definitive evidence to pinpoint the Salton Sea or any other source yet.” AQMD executive officer Barry Wallerstein was quoted in the report; adding that they will collect air samples and will analyze them.

Meanwhile, the air pollution control agency noted that a likely release of bacteria beneath the Salton Sea can also cause the strong sulfur odors. A strong breeze this Tuesday may add to the spreading of the rotten egg smell, but Wallerstein said that it is very not common for odors to remain strong up to 150 miles from their origin.

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