A water ban has been issued for residents of Pelee Island due to a blue-green algae bloom in Lake Erie.

The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit warned residents and visitors to avoid using the water in any capacity including for drinking, bathing, and cooking. Residents were also advised to stay away from the beach and to not eat fish caught from the lake.

The blue-green algae bloom in Lake Erie is affecting the water quality along Pelee Island’s shore and its private well water systems may also be compromised, according to an Aug. 26 release. Gary Kirk, the associate medical officer of health, said in the release that boiling water would not effectively remove potential toxins and advised residents to only use bottled water.

Water that has been contaminated by blue-green algae can cause itchy, irritated eyes and skin. People who ingest contaminated water may experience a number of symptoms including headaches, fever, diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting.

The health unit will issue a release when the ban has been lifted.

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