HYC Sailing to recommence Sat 11th November

7 Nov

Reconfigured sailing calendar will have Sprint Races this weekend on Saturday.

Although the cyanobacteria (algal bloom) problem hasn't disappeared, with a sensible risk management approach it will be safe to sail. Four HYC management committee members met with Hamilton City Council representatives, Public Health Unit representatives, a Waikato Regional Council representative, a lake water quality consultant, and representives of some other lake user groups (Scouts, Dragon Boats, Waka Ama) to discuss the alert system, the current water testing strategy, the current test results, the likely causes of the cyanobacteria issues, and plans to improve the water quality over the coming years. The current testing strategy is to test in shallow water, on a lee shore, where there are visible scums on the water surface. This strategy is a good way of looking for cyanobacteria, but not a good way of working out the risk to sailors. Sailors will spend a minimal amount of time exposed to water near the shore, and typically the wind blows away from the yacht club side of the lake, so their exposure to cyanobacteria should be very low. The council had not intended to suggest by their communication that Lake Rotoroa was closed, rather that users should take notice of the alert level as part of their own risk assessment when deciding whether or not to hold club based recreational events. Clubs should develop sensible risk management plans to minimise any risk to their members from exposure to the lake water and to ensure members know what to look out with respect to symptoms of cyanobacteria toxin exposure, and who to contact.