DELTONA, Fla. - The Florida Department of Health in Volusia County has issued an alert for blue-green algae in Deltona's Pioneer Lake. Health officials are advising the public to take extreme caution in the vicinity of the lake.
Pioneer Lake is located at Abagail Dr and Aaron Dr in Deltona, near the intersection of E Normandy Blvd and Providence Blvd. The alert about the blue-green algae bloom was issued Monday afternoon.
According to the DOH's statement, members of the public are strongly encouraged to refrain from drinking, swimming in, wading in, or taking watercraft of any kind into Pioneer Lake while the alert is in effect. Pets should also be kept away, the statement says, and anyone who may have come into contact is asked to wash their skin and/or clothes with soap and water.
Furthermore, the DOH advises that boiling the water will NOT eliminate the relevant toxins, and so cooking with the water is also considered dangerous. Fish caught from the lake are still considered safe to fillet, as long as they're rinsed in tap or bottled water, the guts are thrown away, and the fillets are cooked at the appropriate temperature. Shellfish are still considered dangerous to eat.
Blue-green algae is a common bacteria in freshwater Floridian waters, the statement says. A bloom is defined as an incident where rapid growth of the algae causes the water to become discolored and/or odorous. The bloom in Pioneer Lake this time around was detected in a water sample collected on November 6th.
Those wishing to report an algal bloom are asked to contact the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, at 1-855-305-3903 or on the online portal. The Florida Department of Health in Volusia County can be contacted with questions about the Pioneer Lake bloom at 386-274-0694.