They’re still swimming at Sutton Lake even with algae blooming

SUTTON, W.Va. — Swimming isn’t forbidden at Sutton Lake, but the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is strongly advising against any contact with the water.

An algae bloom was discovered in the south abutment beach area Friday. Project Manager Keith Anne Nuckles said they closed the beach and issued an advisory for the rest of the lake.

“People swam all weekend long,” she said. “We advised them of the hazard and they can make the choice.”

Blue-green algae is common to the lake but times of high temperatures and slow water movement tend to increase its growth. The bloom can emit toxins which are harmful to livestock and pets and can be harmful to children. The presence off the algae bloom baffled Corps water quality experts since the lake flooded just a week ago and the bloom appeared quickly after the water level returned to summer pool.

“Folks who form our water quality section are out today doing a lot of water quality sampling,” Nuckles said. “They will be looking for the algae and specifically for the toxins and doing a lot of water chemistry.”

The monitoring will continue and the advisories will remain in effect until the algae subsides in the lake.

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