February 26, 2024

Health advisory issued after high concentrations of harmful algal bloom found in Triadelphia Reservoir

High concentrations of harmful algal blooms have been found in a reservoir that serves as a source of drinking water for parts of the DC region, water officials say.

The Suburban Washington Sanitation Commission said Tuesday that high concentrations of blue-green algae, known as Harmful Algal Blooms (HAB), have been found in the Triadelphia Reservoir.

Triadelphia Reservoir is located along the Patuxent River in Montgomery and Howard counties. As well as being a source of drinking water for WSSC Water, the reservoir is used as a recreational area for hiking, fishing and boating.

Officials say WSSC Water’s drinking water has not been affected and continues to meet all Safe Drinking Water Act standards. The health advisory also does not affect the T. Howard Duckett Reservoir.

WSSC officials say they are closely monitoring water quality conditions at their Patuxent Water Filtration Plant.

Visitors to the WSSC Water Triadelphia Reservoir should:

– Avoid all contact with recreational water. If contact with water occurs, rinse immediately with clean water.

– Do not allow pets to swim or drink in the water (always prohibited by WSSC watershed regulations).

– Do not eat fish livers or digestive organs from fish caught in the reservoir. If you catch fish in the reservoir, wash the fillets well with drinking water.

– Signs will be posted throughout the reservoir’s recreational areas to inform visitors of this water contact health advisory.

Officials say the Triadelphia Reservoir water level is low due to an ongoing sediment removal project with all boat ramps closed, and boating prohibited. The Grand Branch and Triadelphia Recreation Areas are open during the project, and the Pig Tail and Green Bridge are closed. Shore fishing is permitted, but only in designated areas.

WSSC says to contact your local health department if anyone or a pet has come into contact with or ingested water at the reservoir.

Montgomery County: 240-777-0311 (Montgomery County 311)

Prince George’s County: 301-883-4748 (Prince George’s County 311)

Howard County: 410-313-1773 (Department of Community Hygiene)

More information can be found about algal blooms online

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