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Public Health News

Posted on: June 17, 2022

Quilcene and Dabob Bay Shellfish Closure

Press Releases (1)

For Immediate Release 
Contact: Michael Dawson, Water Quality Manager
Jefferson County Public Health
360-385-9444 ext. 301

Port Townsend, WA. Recent shellfish samples taken from Quilcene Bay contained elevated levels of the marine biotoxin that causes Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning (DSP). As a result, the Washington State Department of Health has closed Quilcene Bay and Dabob Bay beaches for recreational shellfish harvest for all shellfish species. Danger signs have been posted at public access points warning people not to consume shellfish from these areas. Other Hood Canal waters outside of Quilcene Bay and Dabob Bay remain under a Vibrio warning to cook all shellfish to an internal temperature of 145°F for 15 seconds.

Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning (DSP) can cause gastrointestinal illness. Illness is caused by eating shellfish contaminated with toxins from the naturally occurring marine plankton Dinophysis. Diarrhetic Shellfish Poison toxin isn't destroyed by cooking or freezing. Symptoms of DSP include diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. The onset of symptoms can range from thirty minutes to four hours after consumption. If mild symptoms occur, call your health care provider and Jefferson County Public Health. For severe reactions call 911. Additional information regarding DSP can be found at www.doh.wa.gov/CommunityandEnvironment/Shellfish/RecreationalShellfish/Illnesses/Biotoxins/DiarrheticShellfishPoisoning.

To find out which areas are safe to harvest shellfish in Washington, check the map at doh.wa.gov/ShellfishSafety or call the Biotoxin Hotline at 1-800-562-5632. For the latest information on regulations and seasons, visit the Fish and Wildlife website at wdfw.wa.gov/fishing or call the Shellfish Rule Change Hotline at 1-866-880-5431. 

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Jefferson County Public Health
Always Working for a Safer and Healthier Community

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