Toledo water quality remains clear as lake gets green

TOLEDO (13abc Action News) - As we hear from more and more people about how green Lake Erie is looking, it's raising concerns about our drinking water. So now 13abc is getting to the bottom of what's really happening and where the numbers stand.

There's no change in the water quality dashboard at this point.

One number in particular is what may change that dashboard. That number is the bacteria level in the raw lake water.

"The community is in kind of a heightened sense of awareness of what's going on with the water," said Ed Moore, Toledo’s Public Utilities department director.

So the city created the dashboard for water quality. It currently sits in “clear.” It will only move to "watch" if the microcystis bacteria gets to a level of 5 parts per billion in the raw lake water.

"We have plenty of treatment capacity that can handle 5 parts per billion very easily," said Moore.

Even in “watch” that still means no toxin was detected at the tap in your home. If it's detected at the tap, the dashboard will go to “caution” but even then Moore says they will aggressively start treating the water. It is water Moore says they already treat with more chemicals than in the past and crews use improved processes. He says a lot has changed since the 2014 water crisis.

"There's no such thing as an instant "do not drink" advisory. No one will wake up in the morning and be under a "do not drink" advisory. That's just not the way things happen anymore," said Moore.

13abc just got the results of Wednesday’s testing in the raw lake water and it's 2.4 parts per billion. It's actually a little better than Tuesday’s numbers.