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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tuesday, July 12, 2016
Contact:
Jane Mountjoy-Venning, Thurston County Environmental Health Division, (360) 867-2643 or venninj@co.thurston.wa.us
Art Starry, Thurston County Environmental Health Division at (360) 867-2587 or StarryA@co.thurston.wa.us

Shellfish Advisory Lifted for Squaxin Passage and Boston Harbor
Advisory still in effect for Budd Inlet and Henderson Inlet

OLYMPIA - The recent shellfish harvest closure due to a marine biotoxin that causes diarrhetic shellfish poison (DSP) for Squaxin Passage and Boston Harbor has been lifted. Beaches in this area are now open all species of shellfish harvesting. Shellfish harvesting beach closures remain in place for Budd Inlet, Dana Passage, and Henderson Inlet.

Shellfish recently sampled from Boston Harbor contained DSP biotoxin levels at 4 micrograms per 100 grams, which is well below the safety limit of 16 micrograms per 100 grams established by the Washington State Department of Health.

DSP biotoxins are produced by naturally occurring algae, and can accumulate in shellfish, making the shellfish unsafe to eat. Marine biotoxins are not destroyed by cooking or freezing. Shellfish harvested commercially that are available in stores and restaurants are tested for toxins prior to distribution, and are safe to eat.

Symptoms from DSP can begin from 30 minutes to 12 hours after eating contaminated shellfish. It causes nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and diarrhea, with diarrhea being the most commonly reported symptom. Most symptoms subside within 72 hours.

For more information about shellfish closures, call the Washington State Department of Health 24-hour Shellfish Safety Hotline: 1-800-562-5632, or visit the department's shellfish closure map: https://fortress.wa.gov/doh/eh/maps/biotoxin/biotoxin.html

Additional information about DSP: http://www.doh.wa.gov/CommunityandEnvironment/Shellfish/BiotoxinsIllnessPrevention/Biotoxins/DiarrheticShellfishPoisoning

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County Commissioners:

Carolina Mejia
District 1

Gary Edwards
District 2

Tye Menser
District 3