Officials: Avoid Shellfish From Two Areas Until Water Deemed Safe

High bacteria counts mean consumers should avoid eating the fish.

Seafood Shellfish Ap

SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (AP) — State public health officials are warning consumers to avoid shellfish harvested from two areas of Rhode Island until tests show the water is safe.

The state departments of Health and Environmental Management says anything harvested since July 23 from the northern half of Point Judith Pond and Winnapaug Pond should be thrown out.

Both areas have been temporarily closed to commercial and recreational shellfishing because health officials found high bacteria counts in water samples collected last week.

Environmental Management spokesman Mike Healey says last week’s heavy rains are to blame for the high bacteria levels.

The bacteria in the water could lead to gastroenteritis.

Symptoms include nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

The soonest the areas could reopen is Wednesday, depending on the results of new water samples collected Monday.