EASTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – The Easthampton Health Department advises people and animals to stay out of both Nashawannuck and Lower Mill Pond in Easthampton due to the presence of cyanobacteria algae.
According to The Easthampton Health Department, photos that were sent to Mass. Department of Public Health confirms the presence of cyanobacteria cells that may exceed the MDPH guidelines for recreational water bodies in Massachusetts.
The MDPH is required two samples below the guideline level to be taken, one week apart, to recommend canceling the advisory.
Easthampton Health Department said algae bloom can be caused by warm weather, sunlight, stormwater runoff, failing septic systems and excess nutrients in the water such as human or animal waste.
The City of Easthampton Board of Health advises the public to avoid swimming, fishing, kayaking, and boating.
The following health concerns depend on the type and amount of exposure:
- Contact with algae can cause skin and eye irritation
- Ingesting small amounts can cause gastrointestinal symptoms while large amounts can cause liver or neurological damage
- Inhaling water spray with algae in it can also cause asthma-like symptoms.
The Easthampton Health Department advises to immediately wash yourself with clean water and call your doctor if you come into contact with the algae.
Related: Stay out: Toxic blue-green algae found in Easthampton pond