Silverwood Lake closed to swimmers due to toxic algae

SILVERWOOD LAKE, SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY (KABC) -- A hazardous blue-green algae bloom has prompted the California Department of Water Resources to issue a warning advisory for Silverwood Lake's swimming areas, closing them due to high health risks.

The swimming areas primarily affected by the algae bloom are the Sawpit and Cleghorn swim beaches, but the DWR is warning that the algae can rapidly spread to other parts of the lake.

"The algal bloom can appear as blue-green, white or brown foam, scum or mats that can float on the water's surface and accumulate along the shoreline and boat ramp area," officials said in a press release, warning recreational lake visitors to avoid all contact with the substance.

According to the DWR, the blue-green algae can pose particular health risks to children and pets.

"Recreational exposure to toxic blue-green algae can cause eye irritation, allergic skin rash, mouth ulcers, vomiting, diarrhea, and cold and flu-like symptoms," the department warned. "Pets can be especially susceptible because they tend to drink while in the water and lick their fur afterwards."

The lake will remain open to boaters.
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