Loch warn­ing as dan­ger­ous al­gae ap­pears

Euro Cham­pi­onships venue

Hamilton Advertiser - - NEWS - Kirsten Mc­stay

In just one month it will be one of the main venues for the 2018 Euro­pean Cham­pi­onships – but this week peo­ple have been warned to stay out of Strath­clyde Loch.

The row­ing and triathlon events will be held at the venue when La­nark­shire wel­comes ath­letes from across the con­ti­nent.

How­ever, North La­nark­shire Coun­cil have tem­po­rar­ily can­celled all wa­ter sports and ac­tiv­i­ties after blue-green al­gae was dis­cov­ered.

A spokesper­son said: “As a re­sult of the cur­rent high tem­per­a­tures, Strath­clyde Loch is af­fected by blue-green al­gae.

“This is a com­mon is­sue in ar­eas of fresh wa­ter, par­tic­u­larly dur­ing the sum­mer, and we mon­i­tor the wa­ter reg­u­larly.

“When blue-green al­gae ap­pears in the wa­ter, our wa­ter qual­ity pro­to­col is ac­ti­vated to man­age wa­ter-based ac­tiv­i­ties on the loch and main­tain pub­lic health.

“Swim­ming and other im­mer­sion sports are re­stricted and we rec­om­mend users wash their hands thor­oughly after be­ing at the loch.

“We also have no­tices around the loch ad­vis­ing vis­i­tors to avoid con­tact with the wa­ter and not to al­low dogs to en­ter or drink the wa­ter.”

How­ever, the coun­cil ad­vised that the upcoming cham­pi­onships will still go ahead.

The spokesper­son added: “We can use cur­tain bar­ri­ers in place at the south end of the loch to al­low the al­gae to be treated for ma­jor events.

“The bar­rier and treat­ment of the wa­ter will be used ahead of the row­ing and triathlon events at Euro­pean Cham­pi­onships Glas­gow 2018 which take place at Strath­clyde Park in Au­gust.”

Warm weather con­di­tions can re­sult in al­gae blooms.

Symp­toms of ex­po­sure to blue­green al­gae in hu­mans (mean­ing con­tact with or in­ges­tion of af­fected wa­ter) in­clude ab­dom­i­nal pains, vom­it­ing, di­ar­rhoea, sore throats and blis­ter­ing in the mouth.

More se­ri­ous ef­fects, such as atyp­i­cal pneu­mo­nia and gas­troen­teri­tis are also pos­si­ble. In­ges­tion of the toxic scums that can be formed by the al­gae is also re­ported to have caused deaths in cat­tle, sheep, dogs, birds and fish.

Warn­ing signs have been dis­played around the park ad­vis­ing walk­ers to avoid the wa­ter at all costs.

They state: “In or­der to pro­tect your health and your dogs you should avoid con­tact with the wa­ter.”

In they gos­trath­clyde Park hosted the triathlon for the 2014 Com­mon­wealth Games

Warn­ing No con­tact with wa­ter

Stay out Don’t go in the wa­ter

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