It’s all clear for visitors to use Hershey Beach at Sutherland Reservoir, after laboratory tests showed that algae there is not a health concern.
The Nebraska Public Power District was notified Thursday by the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality that test results indicate blue-green algae found earlier this week are within standards established by the agency, and not a health concern, NPPD spokesman Mark Becker said Thursday.
On Monday, NPPD asked the NDEQ to take water samples and test what appeared to be blue-green algae in the water and along the shoreline of the beach of the Sutherland Reservoir, south of Sutherland.
As a precautionary step, NPPD advised visitors to Hershey Beach not to swim or walk in the water until the results were returned.
With NDEQ’s results, recreational activities at the reservoir can resume.
At least once a week from May through September, NDEQ takes samples for toxic blue-green algae and bacteria at a number of public recreational lakes across Nebraska, including Sutherland Reservoir and Lake Maloney, both of which are owned and operated by NPPD.
Samples are typically collected on Monday and posted on the web site on Thursday or Friday. Results are updated weekly on the web site at www.deq.state.ne.us.