Tests confirm increased toxic algae in drinking water sourced from Skaneateles Lake

SKANEATELES, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) - After blue-green algae was found on the surface of Skaneateles Lake, the New York State Department of Health determined late Tuesday that there is an increased concentration of toxic algae in drinking water.

Tuesday night's late results are the first that show the drinking water being affected.

Residents are still able to drink the water, despite the new findings. 

Samples tested at the state’s Wadsworth Lab in Albany returned results on Tuesday of .26 parts per billion in the finished water sample for the Village of Skaneateles. 

The results are below the EPA’s 10-day health advisory level of .30 parts per billion for sensitive populations.

The Onondaga County Executive also confirms to NewsChannel 9 increased levels at the intake pipes that feed water to the City of Syracuse and other suburbs.

“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 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,” the health department, Onondaga County and City of Syracuse Public Works said in a joint statement. 

The City of Syracuse, Towns of Skaneateles, Geddes, Onondaga and DeWitt, and the Villages of Skaneateles, Elbridge and Jordan all get their water supply from Skaneateles Lake.

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