San Joaquin County health officials issue warning on algae blooms
Algae floats on top of a body of water just northeast of Lodi Lake on Friday, Aug. 29, 2014.
- Tips to avoid algae blooms
Public and environmental health officials urge everyone to protect their health and that of their family, friends and pets during a blue-green algae bloom by taking these precautions:
- Keep children, pets or livestock from swimming in or drinking the water.
- Avoid swallowing or inhaling water droplets, as well as skin contact with water. If skin contact does occur, wash with soap and water or rinse thoroughly with clean water to remove the algae.
- Avoid using the water for drinking, food preparation, bathing or showering.
- Do not boil the water. Boiling will not remove the toxins and may even release more of the toxin into the water.
- Avoid cooking with the water because food may absorb toxins from the water during cooking.
- Do not rely on water jug filtration systems, as they do not protect against the toxins.
- Do not treat the water with a disinfectant such as chlorine bleach. This may break open algae cells and release toxins into the water.
- Because toxins are more likely to collect in animal tissues, health officials recommend that people who choose to eat fish from waters where algae blooms are present should be cautious and remove all fat, skin and organs before cooking.
- If you think you are experiencing symptoms related to exposure to blue-green algae, contact your doctor or the Poison Information Hotline at 800-222-1222 right away.
- If your pet displays symptoms such as seizures, vomiting or diarrhea after contact with surface water, contact your veterinarian right away.
— Source: Public Health Services Department
Posted: Friday, August 29, 2014 2:25 pm
Updated: 2:51 pm, Fri Aug 29, 2014.
With the last three-day weekend of summer upon us, San Joaquin County health officials are warning swimmers, boaters and fishers about the recent rapid growth of blue-green algae blooms in many local waterways that can produce potentially harmful toxins.
The recent hot and humid weather in San Joaquin County, combined with low river flows, have contributed to the rapid growth of algae blooms that may produce harmful toxins, according to Alvaro Garza, San Joaquin County public health officer.
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Friday, August 29, 2014 2:25 pm.
Updated: 2:51 pm.