Reservoir warning lifted, but advisory remains
For the first time in four weeks, Marion Reservoir is not under a warning for toxic blue-green algae.
Kansas Department of Health and Environment downgraded its warning to an advisory Thursday. The advisory was based on tests performed July 23. Tests performed this Monday will be evaluated Thursday.
A warning had been in effect since June 28. Before that, an advisory, which is less serious, had been in effect May 31 through June 21. Only one week this summer has not seen either a warning or a less serious advisory at the reservoir.
Under a blue-green algae advisory, reservoir facilities are open. Although water activities like boating and fishing are considered safe, direct contact with water by wading or swimming remains strongly discouraged for people, pets and livestock.
KDHE recommends that if reservoir water contacts human or animal skin, the area should be washed with clean drinking water as soon as possible. Fish caught during an outbreak are safe to eat if they are rinsed with clean water and if only the fillet is eaten.
Marion, Hillsboro, and Peabody all get their drinking water from Marion Reservoir. Officials emphasize that improvements at treatment facilities make it highly unlikely that neurotoxins from a bloom could make their way into municipal drinking water.