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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, September 3, 2020
Jane Mountjoy-Venning, Water Quality, 360-867-2643, or email

Health Advisory in Effect for Pattison Lake due to Algae Bloom
Toxic levels are above the threshold for health concern

​OLYMPIA – Thurston County Public Health and Social Services (PHSS) has issued a health advisory for Pattison Lake due to a toxic algae bloom producing unsafe levels of microcystin. Lab results received on Wednesday, September 2, show toxin levels at the sample site are 496 micrograms per liter. The state advisory level for microcystin is eight micrograms per liter. 

PHSS staff are working with the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife and local community associations to close access to the lake and post advisory signs. 

Additionally, PHSS recommends extra precautions be taken to avoid the health risks posed by microcystin toxins.

  • Stay out of the lake 
  • Avoid contact with water containing algae
  • Keep pets and livestock out of the water
  • When fishing, it is safest to catch-and-release any fish caught during a toxic algae bloom
  • Do not jet ski, kayak, paddle board, or boat on the water during a toxic algae bloom 
  • Do not drink water taken from the lake 

The algae sample was collected on Monday, August 31. PHSS will continue testing weekly until the health warning is lifted. The health advisory for Pattison Lake will remain in place until samples are within safe levels.

Algae blooms during the summer months are common and PHSS regularly tests surrounding lakes for the presence of algae and corresponding toxicity levels.

You can learn more about toxic algae blooms and health risks on the Washington State Department of Health's Blue-Green Algae website, or contact the Thurston County Health Department at 360-867-2626.


County Commissioners:

John Hutchings
District 1

Gary Edwards
District 2

Tye Menser
District 3