Park users missing warning signs about toxic algae in lake
fresh warning has been issued to users of Apex Park in Highbridge
to stay away from the lakes where there is a potentially toxic blue-green
Environment Agency confirmed
last week that potentially toxic blue-green algae has been found
in the lakes, prompting a warning to park users to avoid getting
close to the water. Extra
warning signs have been installed around the lake by Sedgemoor District
Council, which has also urged park users to stay away from the water.
district councillor Roger Keen told Burnham-On-Sea.com: "I
was concerned to visit Apex on Monday and find several people were
unaware of the algae problem. Two people were fishing and said they
didn't know anything about it, while several dog walkers were also
unaware. We need to re-emphasize that the lake water is currently
District Council's Teresa Harvey told Burnham-On-Sea.com: "Our
advice continues to be that dogs should not be allowed to drink,
swim or paddle in the water. Also, fishing is not permitted, fish
caught from the water should not be eaten, swimming is not allowed,
all contact with the water should be avoided, and notices surrounding
the water should be observed and abided."
"Anyone who has come into contact with the water containing
blue-green algae should wash with fresh water immediately."
who has come into contact with the affected water and has become
ill should obtain urgent medical attention."
first reported here
by Burnham-On-Sea.com, the algae has been growing across the water
surface of the lake next to the main car park during the past few
days, helped by the recent hot weather.
Teresa Harvey added: "Public Health have been notified in case
they have any admissions relating to exposure to the algae. The
EA will continue to monitor the situation and the EA will sample
it again and weekly after that until the bloom subsides."
algae is toxic to animals and people, added council spokeswoman
Claire Faun. She told Burnham-On-Sea.com: "Algae occur naturally
in inland waters such as rivers, streams and lakes. When conditions
are ideal for growth (i.e. a period of hot weather) an algal bloom
can occur. During a bloom, the water becomes less clear and may
look green, blue-green or greenish-brown. Scums can form during
calm weather when several bloom forming species rise to the surface.
This can look like paint, mousse or small clumps."
or blue-green algae, a type of blooming algae, can produce
toxins. These toxins can kill wild animals, livestock and pets.
They can also harm people, producing rashes after skin contact and
illnesses if swallowed. Algal
blooms block sunlight from reaching other plants in the water. They
also use up oxygen in the water at night which can suffocate fish
and other creatures. Oxygen is also used up when the bloom decays."
blooms usually occur in the summer but there are no quick or easy
remedies for the control of blue-green algae once they appear in
a lake or pond. Not all blue-green algae blooms and scums are toxic
but it is not possible to tell from appearance and so its
best to assume they are harmful and take several precautions."
The algae outbreak at Apex Park in Highbridge