“Hop in the water, do an hour swim, kayakers, everything so they can kind of train for Ironman Louisville”, the store’s assistant manager Peter Reid said.
A recreation advisory has been in effect since September 11.
The most recent sample of a bloom taken from the water out front of downtown on September 8 resulted in an unsafe level of the toxin microcystin, which can cause nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, severe headaches, fever and even liver damage.
It also urges people to use warm, soapy water if they have contact and to prevent their pets from entering the river.
Dearing Smith said Louisville Water ‘s scientists have been monitoring the river conditions upstream from Louisville for more than a week, and “we work closely with other water utilities on the Ohio River”.
The advisory doesn’t impact drinking water. “We really want to make sure the river is clean enough so we can have all of our swimmers get in there”.
Dearing Smith said the process includes adding carbon to the water to absorb any odors and toxins, coagulation to help gather particles in the water and chlorination to destroy any contaminants.
These algal blooms are made up of blue-green algae, or cyanobacteria, and produce toxins. Not all algae is harmful.
Every Monday for the past two to three months, Reid has organized a 1.2 mile training swim. The Kentucky Division of Water says water companies that get supply from the river, like Louisville, are treating for the algae and KDOW is sampling during the bloom.
The advisory urges people to avoid direct contact with water that’s visibly impacted by blue-green algae that appears as slicks of bright-green paint. Children may be particularly sensitive. If symptoms persist, consult your health care provider.
On September 15, KDOW personnel observed favorable water conditions for HAB development and observed a significant HAB in Lake Reba.