Parkgoers angry over Park Department's response to parasite

June 21, 2018 06:25 PM

There are new developments to a story NewsChannel 13 broke on Wednesday about a possible parasite in area lakes.

Swimmers are showing up with rashes and doctors are expressing concern. However, the Parks Department doesn't seem to be doing anything about it.


NewsChannel 13 has been in touch with state parks. People we have talked to with kids with the rashes say they have been trying to make sure officials know about this, but parks say they don't have many reports. In fact, they say still just the original two complaints have been filed.

So far, there doesn't seem to be a big push to get information out to park goers. That could be a potential problem.

There were not as many people in the water at Moreau State Park on Thursday as compared to Wednesday. Many groups say they saw our story Wednesday and decided it's best to stay on land and keep the family out of the water.

Park authorities say swimmer's itch -- if that is indeed what these kids are coming down with, is caused by a parasite in the water that burrows into your skin.

Some people have an allergic reaction, which presents itself as bumps and hives and lots of itching.

NewsChannel 13 spoke to one mother Wednesday who posted a photo of her daughter's rash on social media. Several others chimed in to say their kids had it too. Now, we are hearing a group of fifth graders may have been affected while swimming there Wednesday as part of their class field trip.

State parks told NewsChannel Wednesday they would be distributing fliers about swimmers itch to park goers. However, people there on Thursday say they didn't receive anything.

"I think they should've told everybody. They have not alerted enough people. Nobody knows about it, really -- very few, a handful. I don't think they did their job in notifying the people that are coming in here to let everybody swim and have a good day. I don't think they notified and I don't think that's right," noted Colleen Patterson of Saratoga.

NewsChannel 13 found one flyer at the concession stand and watched as a man asked an employee here about the possible problem. It wasn't until he expressed concerns that he was handed one.


WNYT Staff

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