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Toxic algal bloom forces closure of Matt Warner Reservoir in Uintah Co.

Posted at 11:03 AM, Aug 14, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-14 13:03:46-04

UINTAH COUNTY, Utah — The Tri-County Health Department has issued a Danger Advisory after a harmful algal bloom developed at Matt Warner Reservoir in Uintah County.

The reservoir is closed after water samples showed cyanobacteria levels 11 times higher than the “recreation health-based threshold,” according to a news release from the Health Department.

According to the Utah Department of Environmental Quality, harmful algal blooms like the one at Matt Warner Reservoir occur when cyanobacteria in the water multiply to form visible colonies or blooms.

Some types of cyanobacteria can produce toxins that affect the liver or nerves, and can cause a wide range of health effects, from mild skin rashes to death. Click here for more information on the health effects of harmful algal blooms.