Harmful algae bloom growing in the water of Lake Hopatcong


New Jersey has closed several fresh water beaches around the state because swimmers could get sick.

The State Department of Environmental Protection says a harmful algae bloom has grown in the water of Lake Hopatcong in Morris County and other area reservoirs.

Commonly known as blue-green algae, bacteria in the blooms can cause a skin rash if touched and flu-like symptoms if ingested.

While the DEP can't ban people from entering the water, some summer residents say they're disappointed and a little concerned.

"We haven't experienced any issues so far. We have been staying out of the water. But we were in the water the same day they closed the lake," said Jen Donovan.

Donovan, along with her husband, recently purchased a lake property and were looking forward to spending the summer in the water with their family.

Neighbor Brendon Zisk says he's not worried about the warnings and has been in the water every day.

He's been coming to the lake for 15 years and says the water seems no different than in years past.

"A lot of people hear things, read things, and begin question should I be doing that. They always look to news articles to figure out what is going on. If you look its really no big deal," Zisk said.

Spruce Run Recreation Area near Clinton was closed to swimmers nearly every day in June.