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Science & Technology

'Killer slime' has closed beaches in France

By T.K. Randall
September 9, 2019 · Comment icon 18 comments

The algae releases toxic gases. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 Daniel Mayer
An unassuming yet potentially deadly type of algae has appeared in large quantities along the coast of France.
At a glance, the thin coating of light green on the surface of the water lapping against the shoreline of some of Brittany's most picturesque beaches might seem harmless enough, but for those choosing to sunbathe nearby, these intruding aquatic organisms have the potential to kill within seconds.

While toxic algae has always washed up on the shore in the region, this year there is a much larger amount of it due to the over-fertilization of nearby fields and the "exceptional" weather.
The algae kills by giving off poisonous hydrogen sulfide gases that can quickly overwhelm a person and render them unconscious before ultimately inducing cardiac arrest.

"It's a shame this place has come to be associated with death," said activist Andre Ollivro.

Suffice to say - if you see algae on the beach, it's best to steer well clear of it.

Source: Fox News | Comments (18)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #9 Posted by Torviking 5 years ago
Looks like a form of blanket weed to me, which in fresh water strangles fish. It�s like winding in candy floss. Horrible stuff.
Comment icon #10 Posted by Tom1200 5 years ago
No need for that, mate.  To tell the truth I hadn't read the rules.  Rules are just like instructions for flat-pack furniture: there to be read after you've already had a go and cocked it up. If anything I'm probably most guilty of breaking rule  2g. Language: As this is an English speaking site we ask that our members post only in English.   since most of the time I just talk gibberish.
Comment icon #11 Posted by Torviking 5 years ago
Comment icon #12 Posted by Tom1200 5 years ago
Best reply yet!
Comment icon #13 Posted by third_eye 5 years ago
Welcome aboard, are you by any chance a Major?  Sincerely,  A small niche above presumptuous amoebas ~
Comment icon #14 Posted by ChrLzs 5 years ago
To summarise, this article seems to have got a lot of wires crossed..  oh wait, it's Fox... 1. Sea lettuce (Ulva sp.) is generally harmless and in fact most varieties are edible.  It is a pretty normal seaweed that attaches to rocks and does not drift around like algal blooms do.. 2. Like many such marine seaweeds, it may grow rapidly where there are lots of nutrients or polluted water. 3. Like many such marine seaweeds, when it *dies and rots* it may produce H2S, which is a very smelly, poisonous gas.  That gas can cause illness or death, but that is rare, coz it stinks and most people wo... [More]
Comment icon #15 Posted by Tom1200 5 years ago
Do you think that because I'm dull and have no friends I might be John Major? Well, I'm not.  I don't even like peas. (Only people of a certain genre will get the reference!  Spitting Image was a disrespectful caricature puppet show on UK TV in the 1980s.  John Major was PM for a while1; his puppet was dull grey, enjoyed peas, said "Oh yes" after every sentence and was generally as dull and forgettable as the man himself.) Yes, I'm new here, and starting to find my feet.  And I'm overawed by the breadth of knowledge displayed on this site and feel I have little intellectual to input, so a... [More]
Comment icon #16 Posted by third_eye 5 years ago
Spare the political leanings, I was insinuating to the tune... Major Tom of space oddity ... ~ Welcome aboard again...  Though I am rather befuddled by your aversion to peas, did you mean canned or fresh peas?  ~
Comment icon #17 Posted by ChrLzs 5 years ago
Welcome from me too, I quite enjoy what you have posted so far, so keep it up.  And I'm sure you too have a niche or two and can share your expertise! Me, I'm into aerial phenomena, photography/photogrammetry, the wonder (and the failings) of the human mind... and, perhaps strangely, marine biology.  
Comment icon #18 Posted by Scholar4Truth 5 years ago
The minute I saw the title, the movie The Blob came to my mind. 

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