Lake Burrumbeet closed after suspected algae outbreak

By Tim O'Connor
Updated November 2 2012 - 7:48am, first published February 15 2012 - 11:47pm
Lake Burrumbeet closed after suspected algae outbreak

LAKE Burrumbeet has been closed indefinitely after a suspected outbreak of blue-green algae.In an effort to ensure community safety, the City of Ballarat has banned people using the popular water playground.No swimming, water sports, wading or fishing is permitted on the waters during the ban, which also covers extracting water for stock and domestic use.Council said the outbreak had not yet been confirmed, but it had decided to close the lake on a precautionary basis until tests were able to confirm levels of algae present in the water.Councillor John Philips said he strongly supported council’s cautious approach.“I’d urge people to heed those recommendations from council because we don’t want people sick or injured,” Cr Philips said.
View Larger Map“It’s important that we take the appropriate precautions to protect people from outbreaks of blue-green algae or the likes.”Council said the health of the lake was brought into question when a resident contacted officers on Monday.It was closed on the basis of visual inspection, the presence of blue-green algae about this time last year and the large number of other water bodies in Victoria currently experiencing blooms. There isn’t considered to be any downstream impacts.Lake Burrumbeet Advisory Committee chairman Mike Caldwell said reports of possible blue-green algae had filtered through to him about two weeks ago.“A lot of people were noticing it and not using that portion of the lake,” he said.Mr Caldwell said blue-green algae outbreaks were frustratingly common. This week’s closure is the first at the lake since April last year.