Greater Wellington Regional Council is warning swimmers to stay out of the Hutt River from Kaitoke Regional Park to where the river meets Wellington Harbour. This is due to the risk of swallowing pieces of toxic algae. Toxic algae is naturally occurring, but poses a significant risk to human and animal health if ingested.
Because of the warm, dry weather the toxic algae bloom in the Hutt River has increased significantly, and pieces are detaching from the riverbed which poses a risk to swimmers. Even small pieces of toxic algae can be fatal to people and dogs if swallowed. Young children are particularly at risk due to their size.
We advise against swimming anywhere along the Hutt River until further notice. We are working with Regional Public Health and local authorities to inform people of the risks, but we encourage you to know what toxic algae looks like so you can avoid it and stay safe.
Go to the Greater Wellington Regional Council website to find out more.