BAY VILLAGE, Ohio — Columbia Road Beach is closed due to an algae bloom and/or detection of algal toxins.
According to the Bay Village Police Department, the beach is currently a public health risk.
Swimming and wading are not recommended for children, pregnant or nursing women, those with certain medical conditions and pets.
Toxic algae can make people sick who go in the water and can kill dogs who drink the contaminated water within hours.
Veterinarian Beth Malinich from the Animal Hospital of Fairview Park, says she hasn't seen any local cases, but advises to take your dog to the vet as soon as possible if you think it's sick from algae.
“Unfortunately for dogs that have been exposed to one of these algae blooms, there is no treatment available other than supportive care,” Dr. Malinich explained.
Columbia Road Beach will remain closed until further notice. Police are asking that all people and pets stay out of the water.
Max Schaefer of the Ohio Environmental Council added that officials are keeping an eye on other Lake Erie beaches that have potential to be impacted by the bloom.
“I know the Metroparks are looking at monitoring Huntington Beach, because it’s so close by,” he said.
According to the EPA, algal blooms have become more noticeable in Ohio’s lakes, streams and rivers during the last few years. Although most blooms are green algae and not harmful, there are some that are actually a type of cyanobacteria that have the ability to produce toxins.
For more information on algal blooms and toxins, click here.