HARMFUL ALGAL BLOOM (HAB) PUBLIC HEALTH ADVISORY LIFTED FOR HELLS CANYON RESERVOIR

Public Health Advisory

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                        

HARMFUL ALGAL BLOOM (HAB) PUBLIC HEALTH ADVISORY LIFTED FOR HELLS CANYON RESERVOIR

Southwest District Health, in conjunction with the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), has lifted the Public Health Advisory for Hells Canyon Reservoir. The initial advisory for Hells Canyon Reservoir was issued August 9, 2019 and was amended September 12, 2019.

Department of Environmental Quality officials monitor cyanobacteria and associated toxins where harmful algal blooms (HABs) are present and have confirmed that cyanobacteria levels in the Hells Canyon Reservoir have returned to normal and toxin levels are below the safety threshold.

Other blooms may exist on this waterbody that have not been reported to DEQ or the health district. Water users should always exercise caution around water bodies with visible slime or surface scum or a foul odor. High concentrations of toxin-producing cyanobacteria may cause illness to both humans and animals. Report any concerns to DEQ at 208.373.0550.

For more information about harmful algal blooms, visit DEQ’s website at https://www.deq.idaho.gov/water-quality/surface-water/recreation-health-advisories/cyanobacteria-harmful-algal-blooms/

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DEQ Media Contact

Chase Cusack                        208.373.0490              Chase.Cusack@deq.idaho.gov

SWDH Media Contact

Katrina Williams                208.455.5317               Katrina.Williams@phd3.idaho.gov

 

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HARMFUL ALGAL BLOOM ADVISORY LIFTED FOR BROWNLEE

Public Health Advisory

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                        

HARMFUL ALGAL BLOOM ADVISORY LIFTED FOR BROWNLEE

Southwest District Health, in conjunction with the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), has lifted the Cyanobacteria Health Advisory for Brownlee Reservoir. The advisory was issued in July 2019.

DEQ officials monitor cyanobacteria and associated toxins where harmful algal blooms (HABs) are present and have confirmed that cyanobacteria levels in the Brownlee Reservoir have returned to normal and toxin levels are below the safety threshold.

Other blooms may exist on this waterbody that have not been reported to DEQ or the health district. Water users should always exercise caution around water bodies with visible slime or surface scum or a foul odor. High concentrations of toxin-producing cyanobacteria may cause illness to both humans and animals. Report any concerns to DEQ at 208.373.0550.

For more information about harmful algal blooms and recreation water quality advisories, visit DEQ’s website at

http://www.deq.idaho.gov/water-quality/surface-water/recreation-health-advisories/

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DEQ Media Contact

Chase Cusack                        208.373.0490              Chase.Cusack@deq.idaho.gov

SWDH Media Contact

Katrina Williams                208.455.5317               Katrina.Williams@phd3.idaho.gov

 

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AMENDED Health Advisory Issued for Hells Canyon Reservoir

Public Health Advisory – Amended

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                        

AMENDED Health advisory issued for HELLS CANYON RESERVOIR amending affected area

HELLS CANYON RESERVOIR, ID— Southwest District Health (SWDH) and the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) are issuing a health advisory for HELLS CANYON RESERVOIR from Big Bar to Hells Canyon Dam, urging residents to use caution when recreating in or near the water.   The initial advisory issued August 9, 2019 stated the affected area as Copper Creek down to Hells Canyon Dam.

Recent samples taken from the water body indicate high concentrations of toxin-producing cyanobacteria, which can be harmful to people, pets, and livestock. Those with liver or kidney damage are at an increased risk of illness.

Cyanobacteria are a natural part of Idaho’s water bodies. When temperatures rise, their populations can bloom and toxic chemical compounds, or cyanotoxins, can be released into the water. Blooms can vary in appearance, and may look like mats, foam, spilled paint, or surface scum, and have a foul odor.

When recreating near or in HELLS CANYON RESERVOIR, take the following precautions while the advisory is in effect:

  • Avoid swimming, wading, or other activities. Take extra precautions to ensure children, pets, and livestock are not exposed to the water.
  • Do not drink or cook with water containing a bloom. Boiling and filtering the water can increase the risk.
  • Wash your hands thoroughly after handling fish caught in water experiencing a bloom. Cyanotoxins can accumulate in fish and the risk to people is being researched. Any fish caught should be cleaned and washed thoroughly in uncontaminated water and any internal organs disposed of before consumption. If people choose to eat fish from this area, filet the fish and remove all of the fat, skin, and organs before cooking.
  • Clean with potable water as soon as possible if water contacts skin or pet fur.

Symptoms of cyanotoxin exposure include rashes, hives, diarrhea, vomiting, coughing, and/or wheezing. More severe symptoms affecting the liver and nervous system may result from ingesting water. If symptoms persist, consult your healthcare provider.

The public will be advised when it is likely the concern no longer exists.

For more information about harmful algal blooms, visit DEQ’s website at:

http://www.deq.idaho.gov/water-quality/surface-water/recreation-health-advisories/

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DEQ Media Contact

Chase Cusack                        208.373.0490              Chase.Cusack@deq.idaho.gov

SWDH Media Contact

Katrina Williams                208.455.5317               Katrina.Williams@phd3.idaho.gov

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