North Adams Transcript
ADAMS -- Town officials put out a public service announcement Friday asking people to stay clear of select local waterways that may contain blue-green algae, or cyanobacteria.
The announcement came on the heels of notification from state public health officials.
Waterways highlighted in a report from Town Administrator Jonathan Butler include the Reed Brook, Tophet Brook and the lower Hoosac River basin below the Mill Street tributary.
"The Town of Adams is asking residents and visitors to refrain from fishing, swimming or engaging in any other recreational activities in the water around the affected areas throughout the next week or until further update," Butler’s report reads.
It also states, "Further testing will confirm whether or not there is an actual health risk. The public will be immediately informed when more information becomes available."
Cyanobacteria is reported to produce toxins that can be harmful in high doses to humans and other species. Blooms are more common in the eastern part of the state, and regularly prompt the closing of recreational waters.
Town Code Enforcement Officer Scott Koczela said Friday the announcement was "a precautionary measure."
"We haven’t determined exactly how it occurred, but the speculation is that with the dry weather we’ve been having, there hasn’t been a strong water flow through Reed Brook and
Koczela said farm fertilizers and manure contribute to the algae’s development, but that a reprieve from recent weather trends could remedy the situation.
"We’re hoping as this gets into larger bodies of water, and with rain we’ve gotten [Friday] and recently, that this whole issue will be negated," Koczela said.
According to Koczela, either health department representatives or town employees, at the department’s direction, will take water samples and perform tests next week.
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