Chemicals contaminating Lake Zumbro - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

By Chris Conte

Chemicals contaminating Lake Zumbro


ORONOCO (KTTC-DT)-- There are new warnings out for anyone who eats fish from Lake Zumbro. Officials say dangerous chemicals are contaminating the water, making some fish unsafe for consumption.

"It really concerns me, it concerns me a lot," says Rick Cordie who fishes on the lake.

Cordie lives right along side the lake and has been fishing it for the past 30 years.

"It has a great fish population and a great duck population and it's large recreational area, there's swimming done by humans and everything else," Cordie notes.

What's troubling Cordie and scores of others who fish on this lake is that a Minnesota Department of Health study found high levels of perfluorooctane sulfonates in the water. The chemical is more commonly known as teflon that we use to coat everything from pots and pans to carpets.

"For this to come to such a well taken care of lake like this it's surprising, it's definitely going to change our habits," says Sam Allen who also fishes in the lake.

Officials are still trying to figure out how the chemical has gotten into the water.

"You can still eat the fish from Lake Zumbro," says Kevin Stauffer of the DNR.

Stauffer says the advisory is to only eat fish from the lake once a week, not stop eating them all together.

"This change in the consumption advisory to the one meal per week is actually the same for many lakes across the state," Stauffer adds.

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