Ophthalmia Dam - Cyanobacteria (Blue Green Algae) Warning

Published on Saturday, 20 January 2018 at 12:00:00 AM

The Shire of East Pilbara wishes to remind all residents that Ophthalmia Dam, (including Opthalmia Dam Recreation Zone) is a Passive Recreation facility. The potential risks are outlined on the facilities signage and via the Ophthalmia Dams Visitor Fact Sheet.

Regular monitoring has detected increased levels of cyanobacteria and therefore we remind members of the public using the recreational area at the Dam, that NO activity should be undertaken within the water body, this includes use by pets.

Increased levels of cyanobacteria in summer conditions are common in water bodies and continue to be monitored regularly. The algae causes a green discoloration and surface scum in the water, and is capable of producing “Microcystin” a harmful algal toxin. Contact with the bloom may cause skin irritation possibly leading to severe dermatitis, while ingestion of affected water may also cause severe illness and liver damage.

Anyone who comes in contact with algal scum should rinse it off with clean water and seek medical attention if they feel unwell.

Please continue to exercise caution whilst visiting this area and refer to signage or the fact sheet for further information.

Please contact the Shire of East Pilbara Manager Development Services – Health for further enquiries on mobile 0419311545 or the WA Environmental Health Directorate on phone number (08) 9388499.