Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Toxic algae bloom in local reservoir, Rhode Island - 27th Sept 2011

Another body of water in Rhode Island is closed to residents because of an algae bloom.

Slack Reservoir, which is in both Smithfield and Johnston, has experienced a blue-green algae bloom in its northern portion. DEM tests confirmed the presence of algae, which gives the water a green tint.

It's the sixth body of water to be closed because of algae this year.

The DEM cautions that people should avoid swimming, boating or fishing in the reservoir until further notice, and to definitely not drink any water from the reservoir. Pets can also be affected and so the ban applies to them as well.

Contact with toxins released by the algae can cause a variety of symptoms including rashes and irritation of the eyes, nose and throat. If ingested, the toxins can cause stomach aches, diarrhea, vomiting and nausea. Rarer effects in extreme cases include fever, liver damage or nevous system damage.

Officials say young children and pets are more at risk because they are more likely to drink the contaminated water. Read More