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Toxin turns up in drinking water sample from Skaneateles Lake

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The New York State Department of Health, Onondaga County Health Department, and City of Syracuse Department of Water have released the following statement about the presence of harmful algae blooms on Skaneateles Lake:

Following the reports of algal blooms on Skaneateles Lake, the New York State Department of Health, Onondaga County Health and the City of Syracuse Department of Water worked collaboratively to collect samples to determine whether there were levels of algal toxin that could impact the municipalities that use Skaneateles Lake as a public drinking water supply.

Samples tested at the state’s Wadsworth Lab in Albany returned results late today of .26 parts per billion in the finished water sample from the Village of Skaneateles. The results are below the EPA’s 10 day health advisory level of .30 parts per billion for sensitive populations, so residents can continue to drink the water while ongoing sampling continues.

After receiving today’s results, the Department of Health, County and City immediately conducted expanded, confirmatory sampling throughout the distribution system and increased chlorine levels in the water system in to help decrease toxin levels. Results from the expanded sampling effort will be available Wednesday and officials from the New York State Department of Health will be in Onondaga County to help interpret results and discuss next steps for treatment as needed.

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