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Beaches Reopen Only Two Days After Tar Balls Washed Ashore

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Only two days after mysterious tar balls washed ashore, South Bay beaches have reopened to the public.

On Friday evening, around 6 p.m., the Coast Guard, Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, and other coordinating agencies lifted the ban, allowing visitors back to the beaches for the weekend. The affected beaches ran the coast of the South Bay, from El Segundo down to Redondo Beach.

As of Friday, 40 cubic yards of the oil globs or tar has been picked up by cleanup crews—equal to about three dump trucks, says the L.A. Times. Although officials has deemed the beaches safe enough for visitors to return to the water, Heal The Bay urges "an abundance of caution" and to keep an eye out for any remaining globs in the sand.

The origin of the oil remains a mystery and test results could take up to several weeks.

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The oil globs were first spotted by lifeguards on Wednesday morning and began washing ashore in the early afternoon. According to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, no animals have been affected by this spill aside from one loon currently in care.