Health advisory issued for Duckett Reservoir in Laurel due to blue green algae

The Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission issued a water contact health advisory for T. Howard Duckett Reservoir this week, according to a City of Laurel news release.

The commission said Tuesday it has detected high concentrations of blue green algae in the Laurel reservoir, which can cause serious adverse health effects if contacted.


WSSC advised visitors that water contact is not recommended at the reservoir. Rinse off immediately with clean water if contact is made.

Pets should not be allowed to swim in or drink the water, which is prohibited at all times by WSSC watershed regulations.

Earlier this month, three dogs in North Carolina died after swimming in a lake with blue green algae.

Visitors are urged to not consume fish livers or digestive organs from fish caught in the reservoir. Also, fillets should be washed thoroughly with drinking water.

The commission, which owns and operates Duckett, recommends that if you have contacted or ingested water at the reservoir, you should contact your local health department.

The Duckett Reservoir holds approximately 5.7 billion gallons of source drinking water that is carried via an underground pipe to WSSC’s Patuxent Water Filtration Plant for treatment, according to the WSSC website.

The Anne Arundel County Department of Health recently issued a similar health advisory for Lake Waterford in Pasadena because of the blue green algae.

Permit-holders at the Duckett Reservoir are still able to use the picnic areas and hike on designated trails.

For more information, call the WSSC hotline at 301-206-7011.