Expert discusses algae reaching Maumee River in downtown Toledo

Expert discusses algae reaching Maumee River in downtown Toledo

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Images circled around Toledo Wednesday of blue green algae floating in the Maumee River downtown. While it is unusual, residents should not over react with concern.

University of Toledo Ecology Professor Thomas Bridgeman says the algae made its way downtown because the river is flowing very slowly, but it's not really any more cause for alarm than normal.

"It's a long way from anywhere we get our drinking water. It's more of a recreational concern," Bridgeman said.

The city of Toledo maintains the water is still safe to drink.

Bridgeman says it requires a lot of chemicals to treat the water, however, almost everything that is put into the water to treat it comes back out.

"There is a little bit of residual chlorine that you can taste and smell," Bridgeman said. "There's a little bit of 'alum' that can cause a sheen on the surface of the water. Not particularly harmful, but maybe not pleasant to drink."

Bridgeman recommends that residents filter their water before drinking from the tap to help with the taste.

The city put a lot of effort into protecting the water in recent years, but Bridgeman says it might be quite a few more years before they know whether it has made an impact.

"These practices that are being put into place are expensive and take a long time to implement," Bridgeman explained.

For now, Bridgeman expects this season's algae bloom to be gone by October.

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