ANN ARBOR, Mich. — A robotic underwater laboratory has been deployed in Lake Erie to detect toxins produced by harmful algae that threaten city water supplies.
The project is intended to prevent recurrence of a 2014 tap water contamination crisis that prompted a do-not-drink order for more than 400,000 residents of Toledo, Ohio, and southeastern Michigan.
The device is positioned on the lake bottom, where it can provide about one day's notice if highly toxic water drifts toward the Toledo intake system.
The federal Great Lakes Restoration Initiative paid $375,000 for the lab.
Timothy Davis of the NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory in Ann Arbor says Lake Erie will get two more of the devices next summer.
Data from the three labs will help produce short-term algal bloom forecasts for the area.
- Brewery makes algae beer to spotlight threat to Lake Erie
- $300M for Great Lakes cleanup moves forward in Congress
- Trump budget again targets regional water cleanup programs
- Plan to combat algae would cause slight hike in water rates
- Public health advisory empties Lake Erie beach
- Toledo upgrades raw water from Lake Erie to 'clear'
- Toxic algae flourishes despite vast sums spent to prevent it
- Algae on river flowing into Lake Erie prompts warning