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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Friday, April 27, 2018
Gabby Byrne, Public Information Specialist (360) 867-2514 or byrneg @co.thurston.wa.us

Toxic Algae Health Warning In Effect for Summit Lake
Toxin levels above the level for health concern

​OLYMPIA –Summit Lake has a toxic algae bloom. A resident at Summit Lake reported an algae bloom on the afternoon of April 24, 2018. Thurston County Public Health and Social Services staff sampled the lake, notified the community via the algae alert email list, and posted a caution sign at the boat launch that same day.

Many residents of the Summit Lake community get their drinking water from the lake. Lab results received today show that the algae bloom is producing unsafe levels of Anatoxin-a. Reports show toxin levels at the sample site are 9.95 micrograms per liter. The state advisory level for Anatoxin-a is 1 microgram per liter. Anatoxin-a is a potent neurotoxin that is fast-acting, and can cause serious illness or death.

Thurston County Public Health and Social Services recommends that residents do not drink the lake water. Filtration, boiling, and other water treatment methods do not remove or deactivate the algae toxin. Public Health advises residents and the public that if their source of water comes from the lake, they should not consume the water, or use it to:

  • Mix formula or other food/drink.
  • Rinse food or do dishes.
  • Brush teeth, or bathe.

 In addition, Public Health recommends that people:

  • Do not swim or water ski in the lake.
  • Keep pets out of the lake and do not let them drink lake water.
  • Should not eat fish that come from the lake during an algae bloom.

The health warning for Summit Lake will remain in place until samples are within safe levels for two consecutive weeks. Testing will continue until the samples are within safe limits for two consecutive weeks.

For more information on Summit Lake, visit the Summit Lake Toxic Algae website. For more information about blue-green algae, frequently asked questions, and the County lakes program, visit the County's Blue-Green Algae Advisories website. You can sign up to receive email algae alerts on the website or by calling 360-867-2645. The Health Department also maintains an updated information line for residents at (360) 709-3080.



County Commissioners:

Carolina Mejia
District 1

Gary Edwards
District 2

Tye Menser
District 3