Ohio Water Contamination Linked to Algae Bloom

Posted in: United States Water News, Water Contamination, Water Crisis
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Article courtesy of Kieran Bradshaw | August, 2014 | Dumb Out | Shared as educational material

Ohio’s officials blame an algae bloom on Lake Erie is for producing toxins which got into the water supply for the city of Toledo and surrounding areas, and promise an extensive review of how the water supply became tainted.

The water problem affected 400,000 people in Ohio and Michigan over the weekend to a state of emergency in Ohio’s fourth-largest city Toledo, and forced thousands to avoid drinking tap water for more than two days.

State Rep. Dave Hall wants to bring in experts to investigate the cause of the blooms in Lake Erie, and any potential links with weather, farm runoff, manure management and wastewater treatment facilities.

“I don’t think you’re going to change things overnight,” Hall said. “There’s not a silver bullet because I think there have been practices that have been in place for years that’s caused us to get to this point,” he said.

Photo credit: Dumb Out

Toledo’s mayor D. Michael Collins lifted the water advisory Monday morning after dozens of tests over the weekend showed an algae-induced toxin contaminating Lake Erie had dropped to safe levels following intensive chemical treatments.

Following the ban, Toledo officials recommended that residents who had not used their water since Saturday flush out their systems. People are also advised not to water lawns or wash cars at the risk of overwhelming the system.

Gov. John Kasich also declared a state of emergency in three counties, bringing in soldiers from the Ohio National Guard to deliver bottled water and operate purification systems to produce drinkable water.

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