Lake water can be home to thousands of microscopic parasites and bacteria that can potentially cause illness, making them dangerous lakes.
Some can be murky, hiding hazards such as rocks, logs and uneven surfaces. While some strong currents such as rapids are visible, others can flow under the water’s surface.
Some African lakes can release deadly clouds of volcanic gases. The acid waters of these lakes are capable of causing burns to human skin.
Gases from magma that dissolve in lake water to form such acidic brews include carbon dioxide, sulphur dioxide, hydrogen sulphide, hydrogen chloride, and hydrogen fluoride. All poisonous to life.
Here are the most dangerous lakes in the world:
1. Boiling Lake
Boiling Lake is located in Dominica’s Morne Trois Pitons National Park. This lake is the second-largest natural hot spring on earth.
Boiling Lake is flooded fumaroles (a crack or a hole in the Earth’s crust) from a volcano in the area known as the Valley of Desolation.
The temperature of this lake is 92 ° C. The lake is always warm due to the volcano crater near the lake.
Swimming is strictly prohibited because the water can return to its original boiling state in a matter of seconds with little or no warning, and can be to harmful and dangerous.
2. Karachay Lake
Lake Karachay was a small lake in the southern Ural mountains in central Russia.
Starting in 1951, the Soviet Union used Karachay as a dumping site for radioactive waste from Mayak, the nearby nuclear waste storage and reprocessing facility, located near the town of Ozyorsk.
Lake Karachay has often deemed the most polluted place on Earth. Of the fish and other aquatic species that survive there, all are considered to carry high levels of lethal radiation.
It’s so toxic that a 5-minute visit can give a human a dose of radioactive dust that could kill them; a longer visit of an hour or so is guaranteed to be lethal.
During a drought in 1961, the wind carried toxic dust that irradiated 500,000 people, a tragedy compared to the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima.
3. Lake Michigan
Lake Michigan is the third largest of the five Great Lakes of North America and probably, the deadliest.
It has been said by scientists that due to the volcano under the lake, carbon dioxide gas got into the water and its level increased to take the form of cloud and wrapped all around.
The shape of Lake Michigan makes it particularly prone to dangerous rip currents and the piers and docks magnify the current problem, causing death and injuries.
The lake becomes more lethal in the fall months of October and November when sudden and significant changes in the air and water temperatures increase the spontaneity and strength of the currents and waves.
Lake Michigan is also responsible for a notorious plane crash.
And similarly to the Bermuda Triangle, there was no logical reason behind it.
NWA Flight 2501 was one of the worst plane crashes in history with all 58 passengers going down with the plane over Lake Michigan. To this day, the plane has not been recovered.
In addition to the strange air activity above the lake, it’s also a dangerous body of water due to its fast-forming currents.
4. Lake Monoun
Located in the Oku Volcanic Field in Cameroon, Lake Monoun appears to be a normal body of water. But its looks are deceiving as it’s one of only three lakes on earth that has exploded without warning in a limnic eruption.
On August 15, 1984, the lake exploded in a limnic eruption, which resulted in the release of a large amount of carbon dioxide that killed 37 people.
Twelve of the fatalities were riding in a truck that stalled and where killed by the lethal gas when they exited the truck to investigate.
It was the first known case of lake overturn.
5. Lake Nyos
Lake Nyos can be found in Cameroon, and is one of the world’s exploding lakes.
Lake Nyos erupts periodically due to a pocket of magma that fills the lake with carbonic acid. In 1986, Lake Nyos, just 62 miles from Lake Monoun, exploded after a pocket of magma on the lakebed leaked carbon dioxide into the water, transforming it into carbonic acid, killing about 1,700 people and 3,500 livestock.
Basically, nothing survived for 15 miles.
The lake continues to pose a menace because its natural wall is fragile and even the slightest tremor could destroy it.
If the water from Lake Nyos flowed free, it could destroy many villages on the path.
6. Lake of the Ozarks
This recreational lake was just five spots shy of being the most dangerous place to boat in the United States in 2017.
According to the U.S. Coast Guard boating statistics, the lake had 57 boating accidents. That is only 39 accidents short of the Atlantic Ocean’s total for the year.
With no one policing the activities, big racing boats and cruisers battle over territory and pose deadly threats to smaller boats, creating a raucous, daredevil environment.
Also, elevated levels of ecoli have been discovered there, partly due to a local restaurant at the 7 mile marker dumping raw sewage into the lake.
7. Jacob’s Well
Jacob’s Well, located in Texas, is home to some of the most dangerous diving caves in the world.
The mouth is a 30-foot deep natural well that opens up at the bottom to a broad network of caves that many inexperienced divers never leave.
The elaborate network of underwater caves stretching endlessly down the well plunge over 100ft down. About 6,000ft of passages have been documented going down to well till date.
There are various signs posted around the well reading “STOP. PREVENT YOUR DEATH! GO NO FARTHER,” along with facts concerning the frequent cave deaths.
8. Lake Natron
Lake Natron, located in northern Tanzania, is covered in a red salt crust, and has a pH level as high as 10.5, making it pretty unsuitable for living creatures.
In fact, it can burn the skin and eyes of animals that aren’t adapted to the lake’s specific makeup.
Water flows into the lake, but doesn’t have an outlet to drain out of.
As a consequence, as the water evaporates, it leaves behind high concentrations of salt—making it a salt lake, like the Dead Sea.
It can reach temperatures as high as 140°F (60°C). it’s a popular spot for flamingos.
9. Horseshoe Lake
Located in California, Horseshoe Lake is deadly because of the carbon dioxide it emits.
The lake also has certain amounts of hydrogen sulphide, which give it a characteristic rotten egg smell. Hydrogen sulphide is lethal.
The Horseshoe Lake emits roughly 50-150 tons of carbon dioxide per day.
The trees growing within 100 acres of the lake are all dead.
In 2006, three people took shelter in a cave near Horseshoe Lake and died from the high volume of carbon dioxide in the cavern.
This body of water isn’t easy to accidentally stumble upon as it’s heavily marked with signs warning of the severe danger.
10. Lake Kivu
One of Africa’s Great Lakes, Lake Kivu sits on the border between the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Rwanda.
Having layers of carbon dioxide in its bed of volcanic rock, it also has 55 billion cubic meters of methane generated by the bacteria on the lake bottom.
This deadly combination makes Lake Kivu the deadliest of three exploding lakes in the world.
The lake pose a lethal risk to the 2 million people who reside in the Lake Kivu basin, who would either die from methane explosions or overpowering carbon dioxide gas if an earthquake or volcanic activity agitates the lake.
In order to prevent another catastrophic eruption, the government turned to this methane as a source of energy, and tap this source of gas before it explodes.
11. Blue Hole
The Blue Hole, sitting in the Red Sea, just south of Dahab on the Sinai Peninsula, is one of the most dangerous diving locations in the world.
A gaping sinkhole that drops straight down over 100m, the Blue Hole in Dahab is one of Egypt’s most infamous dive sites.
Many divers have lost their lives in this 400 foot deep cave, earning the nickname “Diver’s Cemetery.”
Blue Hole in Dahab, is possibly the most deadly dive site on Earth. In April 2000, Russian diver Yuri Lipski strapped on an air tank and a helmet camera loaded his belt with weights and plunged into the Blue Hole.
He never resurfaced. Lipski died at just over 300 feet underwater. The diver had recorded his own death.
The leading cause of fatalities at the Blue Hole is nitrogen narcosis, which can cause mental and physical impairment when the body is subjected to high pressure and also, insufficient air capacity upon ascent.
Sources: Brightside, OutlookIndia
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