Instagram users are risking their health for images at Spain's toxic Monte Neme lake
Monte Neme, a former high-value tungsten mine and present-day abandoned quarry in Galicia, Spain, is a popular tourist destination due to the beautiful turquoise lake that now covers the area. Despite its visual appeal, this lake’s bright blue and green colors are the result of chemical contamination from the former tungsten mine, making it a health risk for anyone who enters the lake.
Despite the risk of becoming ill due to exposure to the toxic chemicals, a number of Instagram influencers have entered the waters and developed various health issues as a result, according to Spanish publication Publico.
|A small set of the images shared to Instagram with the hashtag ‘#monteneme’|
At least one Instagram user has been hospitalized with skin damage and digestive issues after entering and swallowing the water, the report claims. Another Instagrammer who suffered a two-week skin rash after entering the water reportedly said the illness was ’worth it’ to the get the Instagram image. Another person reported vomiting after entering the water, saying they didn’t see any signs warning them to avoid the area.
Instagram users who dream of influencer status have risked life and limb to get the ‘perfect’ picture. According to The New York Times, Instagrammers have also been taking risky shots at the highly alkaline Novosibirsk lake in Siberia. Despite its bright blue waters, the location is an ash dump for a nearby coal plant; the water contains high concentrations of metal oxides and calcium salts and can damage skin.