Ohio Valley May Be In For Another “Algae Bloom” On Area Waterways This Summer

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That blue-green tint at the edges of creeks, lakes and even the Ohio River last summer may make a reappearance soon.

According to the Ohio DNR, the state is strengthening its approach to addressing harmful algae blooms in recreational waters like state park lake beaches and boat ramps.

“We are strengthening our  approach by helping Ohioans to better understand recreational water quality before they begin activities, and by issuing public health advisories earlier,” said Dr. Mary DiOrio, medical director of the Ohio Department of Health. “As we continue to better understand harmful algae blooms and the toxins they may produce, we have eliminated the previous requirement for a probable cause of an algae bloom-related human illness or pet death before issuing an elevated recreational or public health advisory.”

Other updates to the state’s harmful algae bloom strategy include designating the state’s BeachGuard website as the single resource for advising the public about recreational water quality, consolidating information previously posted separately on multiple agency websites.

“We’re encouraging people to ‘know before you go’ by checking our BeachGuard website,” Dr. DiOrio said. “BeachGuard lists any recreational public health advisories and water quality data for some toxins and E coli bacteria for Ohio state park lake beaches and boat ramps as well as participating non-state public and private beaches,”

BeachGuard is accessible directly at www.odh.ohio.gov/healthybeaches or at ohioalgaeinfo.com which also offers other extensive harmful algae bloom information and resources provided by the Ohio EPA.

Signs will also be placed near some recreational waterways advising what algae blooms look like and why it’s important to avoid them.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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