Health Alert: Potentially deadly toxin found in Moses Lake

Health District: Avoid all contact
Health Alert:  Potentially deadly toxin found in Moses Lake

Grant County Health District officials sent a serious warning Thursday: avoid contact with the waters of Moses Lake in all areas.

The health district took samples from five different areas of the lake Monday to check for the spread of blue-green algae. All samples came back with toxin levels higher than state recreational guidelines.

GHCD put up signs around the lake that will stay up until the lake is clear of the toxin.

According to the health district, the warning means people should not swim, waterski or wakeboard on the lake. Do not drink the water or allow pets or livestock near the lake. Also, fisherman are advised to thoroughly clean any fish caught in the lake and discard their guts.

The type of blue-green algae found in Moses Lake produce Microcystin toxin, which can cause serious illness in people and animals.

Symptoms can take between 30 minutes and 24 hours to appear and can include jaundice, shock, abdominal pain/distention, weakness, nausea/vomiting, severe thirst, rapid/weak pulse and death.

The health district will test the lake weekly until sample results show toxins are below state guidelines.