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Tanwax Lake in Pierce County closed due to toxic algae

The lake doesn't have elevated levels of toxic algae currently, but algae is "highly visible.".
Credit: Tacoma Pierce County Health Department

PIERCE COUNTY, Wash. — Tanwax Lake in Pierce County was closed by the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department (TCPHD) on Friday after algae became "highly visible" across the lake. 

The lake doesn't currently have elevated levels of toxic algae, but the TPCHD decided to close it anyway out of "an abundance of caution" as the lake is a high recreational use area. 

TPCHD will inspect the lake next week, and if the algae is no longer an issue, the advisory will expire after two weeks. 

Toxic algae occur naturally in lakes. They can produce toxins that make people, pets and other animals sick. People who are exposed to toxic algae report experiencing muscle weakness, vomiting, diarrhea and nausea. Pets exposed to toxic algae may experience lethargy, vomiting, diarrhea, convulsions, difficulty breathing and general weakness.