Torrens Lake now open for paddling activities

Torrens Lake Now Open

All paddlers should note that the Torrens Lake was closed from Tuesday 8th January to Friday 1st February 2013 due to elevated levels of blue-green algea in the lake. Elevated levels in the lake of cyanobacteria are now reduced to allowable limits for recreational contact with the water in the lake/river
Please contact:
Ian Heard at Canoe SA on 08 8240 3294 or Adelaide City Council, Water Assets Division on 8203 7235 for further information

General Health Advisory for Paddling in Recreational Water

Paddlers should be aware that paddling in recreational water can have adverse health effects. Kayaking/canoeing is usually a secondary contact activity, however, some paddling activity can lead to paddlers engaging in primary contact activities (see definitions below)

Paddlers should avoid primary contact activity in recreational water bodies for 3 days after a significant rain event (>10mm). Stormwater and rain runoff can carry pathogens into waterways.

Flooding can mean that animal faeces or sewerage may be carried into waterways (particularly in urban areas).

Pathogens may be present in recreational water used by paddlers. Viruses and other dangerous organisms can survive in sea or fresh water and can enter a persons body through mouth, ears, nose and eyes as well as any cuts or abraisions on your skin.

People with suppressed immune systems are the most vulnerable. This can include people who are taking immune-suppressant drugs or elite athletes who have a rigorous training regime .

Paddlers should understand the source of water in waterways they intend to paddle, this includes whether the water may include stormwater or rainwater runoff entering the waterway.
Indicators of contamination can include:
  • abnormal discolouration of the water;
  • an unpleasant odour; or
  • a scum or visible film on the surface of the water.

What type of paddling are you doing?

Below you will find the definitions of primary contact and secondary contact. Carefully read the definitions and make an informed decision on the basis of the type of paddling you will be doing.

Primary Contact (whole body contact) – activity in which the whole body or the face and trunk are frequently immersed or the face is frequently wet by spray, and where it is likely that some water will be swallowed or inhaled, or come into contact with ears, nasal passages, mucous membranes or cuts in the skin (eg swimming, diving, surfing or whitewater canoeing).

Secondary contact  – activity in which only the limbs are regularly wet and in which greater contact (including swallowing water) is unusual and including occasional and inadvertent immersion.

For more information on water quality and paddling in recreational water CLICK HERE