“We are strengthening our approach by helping Ohioans better understand recreational water quality before they begin activities, and by issuing public health advisories earlier solely based on the levels of harmful algal bloom toxins,” Ohio Department of Health (ODH) Medical Director Dr. Mary DiOrio said. “As we continue to better understand harmful algal blooms and the toxins they may produce, we have eliminated the previous requirement for a probable case of an algal bloom-related human illness or a pet death before issuing an elevated recreational public health advisory.”
The state has also collated all information pertinent to harmful algal blooms, whether from the ODH, the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency or the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, onto its BeachGuard website.
“We are encouraging people to ‘know before you go’ by checking our BeachGuard website,” DiOrio said. “BeachGuard lists any recreational public health advisories and water quality data for some toxins and E. coli bacteria for Ohio state park lake beaches and boat ramps as well as participating non-state public and private beaches.”