Despite two potential blue-green algae blooms in Dartmouth’s Lake Banook, paddleboarding, kayaking and canoe club races were on full display Saturday. The municipality has posted advisories informing people of the suspected blooms, which have not been confirmed as blue-green algae.
Some people say they don’t know any more than what the signs tell them, including how to notice the possible toxins.
“You see the signs, but it doesn’t tell you what to look for,” said Beth Skerrett. “That’s a concern.”
“Other than seeing the signs and what they told me, I wouldn’t have known any different,” said Kelly Robb.
Blue-green algae is described as “surface scum and/or discoloured water.” Once testing is complete, the results will be made public.
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In the meantime, one resident, who didn’t want to speak on camera, says he’s hoping for a solution to the potential problem — especially if the warm weather persists. But he fears it could be a costly fix.
Despite that, former national paddler Hannah Vaughan, who calls Lake Banook home, says she trusts the local experts to make sure things are safe.
“We have really fantastic coaches here and I think they’re all really aware of it. I got an email from my canoe club just saying be aware of this and just linking to the warnings,” Vaughan said. “As long as the canoe clubs are on top of it and aware, I think from the perspective of the athletes, it’s safe in that way.”
The municipality is currently asking the public to avoid swimming and to not allow pets in the areas of concern.
An employee from a paddleboard rental company near the postings tells Global News their policy is to remain open as long as the lake is open, so business will continue as usual. They do, however, inform visitors of advisories when they sign a waiver.
The municipality has not given a date for when the test results will be available.