Concerns raised over 'ineffective' signs about toxic algae at Elk, Beaver Lake
A sandwich board signs warns visitors of toxic blue-green algae at Beaver and Elk Lake. Aug. 13, 2019. (CTV Vancouver Island)
A Saanich man says he's worried not enough people know about a toxic algae bloom that has made a popular lake unsafe for swimming.
Nelson Robertson is calling for increased signage at Elk and Beaver lakes to warn people about a toxic blue-green algae bloom.
The bloom is nothing new and signs are posted around the lake warning people not to swim, but Robertson said he still sees people in the water who are unaware.
He said people and pets are at risk unless the signage is improved.
"It's totally ineffective unless you're standing right up beside it," he said. "We're talking nothing to throw up red flags and a couple of signs that stand out."
He said the current signs – sandwich boards with black and white writing and a red stripe that says "Caution" – are easy to miss.
"At the very least it should say 'Warning,' should be before they even get down here they see it in the parking lot," said Robertson.
Blue-green algae produced toxins that can make people sick and lead to lethal liver damage in dogs.
In late July, blue-green algae caused a puppy's death in Fredericton, N.B., after the dog went swimming in the Saint John River.
The Capital Regional District advises people and pets to stay out of the water until the warning is lifted.