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Blue-green algae in Geist, Morse and Eagle Creek reservoirs bring safety warnings

Posted by kim carpenter on August 24, 2008
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Swimmers told to use caution as toxin-producing bacteria grow in Geist, Eagle Creek and Morse

By Shari Rudavsky  Indy Star

Indiana State Department of Health officials have issued a warning that levels of blue-green algae are high enough at Eagle Creek, Geist and Morse reservoirs for swimmers to exercise caution when in the water.

Tests at the three popular swimming spots did not find dangerously high levels of a toxin that the blue-green algae can produce. But Department of Health officials are advising people to tread carefully in the water and avoid direct contact with the algae — actually a bacteria, called cyanobacteria — which can irritate the skin.

“Right now, we’re just saying, ‘It’s there — you need to be aware,’ ” said Dr. James Howell, a state epidemiologist. “We’re not going to say stay out of the water; be aware that there is a risk.”


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