Trash and refuse now cover the sand at SF’s Fort Funston and Ocean Beach, but don’t go picking it up — as it’s from sewer system “outfalls.”

Depressingly, SFist used to run longtime, recurring features about trash strewn all over Dolores Park, usually the day after 4th of July, the Monday after Pride Weekend, or really the Monday after any hot-weather weekend. And while Dolores Park-goers have largely cleaned up their act — at least as far as we know — the trash in public parks problem has reared its ugly head again. The video below shows trash strewn all over Fort Funston this week, and reports say there’s similar trash covering the surface at Ocean Beach.

plastic polluted beach, Fort Funston
byu/Head-Working8326 insanfrancisco

But this time, it’s not because of litterbugs, according to SFGate. The recent downpours of rain have backed up the pipes in what are called combined sewer overflows (CSOs), that is, pipes into which rainwater, sewage, and industrial wastewater all flow. And the excess in rainwater has caused those pipes to back up at various overflow “outfall” points. Fort Funston and Ocean Beach happen to be near those outfall points, hence the trash flowing onto them.

“This is something that can occur seasonally when rainfall can bring trash into outfalls,” National Park Service spokesperson Julian Espinoza tells SFGATE. “Our maintenance team has been made aware and is currently determining next steps.”

Are you tempted to go do some volunteer trash pick-up of this rubbish on Ocean Beach and Fort Funston? Do not! It may be intermingled with raw sewage, and therefore toxic.

“For the safety of our visitors, we discourage anyone from picking up garbage without the supervision of park staff,” Espinoza said to SFGate. So, people, let the National Park Service deal with this one.

Related: Huge Pile of Flaming Garbage Dumped on Great Highway [SFist]

Image: Head-Working8326 via Reddit