Grant County health department warns of harmful algae blooms in Moses Lake

The Grant County Health Department is warning against having any contact with any water from Moses Lake after toxic algae blooms were found in the water.

Samples taken from Sept. 22 indicated that there were algae levels above the recreational guidance value. 

The type of blue-green algae that is present in Moses Lake produce microcystin toxin, which can cause serious illness in people, pets, and livestock

Given the history of microcystins in Moses Lake shown by sampling over previous years, it is possible toxins are present in other areas of the lake and blooms were observed at Cascade Park and the Sand Dunes, the health department said. 

Residents and visitors are asked to avoid all contact with Moses Lake water areas, including recreational water activities (skiing, wakeboarding, etc.), and don't drink the water from the lake. 

Symptoms may take 30 minutes to 24 hours to appear, depending upon the size of the person or animal affected and the amount of toxic bloom consumed. Microcystin toxicosis may include allergic reactions from rashes to gastrointestinal distress from nausea/vomiting, abdominal pain/distention, whole body weakness, severe thirst from dehydration, jaundice, rapid/weak pulse, and rarely to shock progressing to death.

Contact a health care provider immediately if you become ill or have symptoms after suspected exposure to an algae bloom.

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