Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Outbreaks and Alerts: September 1, 2010

A daily digest of international outbreaks, alerts and food safety news

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United States
  • Alabama. August 30th: The Alabama Department of Public Health has closed shellfish growing waters in Area II, because of possible bacterial contamination of the oyster beds due to recent heavy rainfall.
  • Curry County, Oregon. August 30th: A health advisory for contact with marine water at Harris Beach State Park in Curry County was lifted after water tests showed that fecal bacterial levels had subsided.
  • Coos County, Oregon. August 30th: A health advisory has been issued for Sru Lake, prompted by high levels of toxic blue-green algae. Swallowing or inhaling water droplets should be avoided, as well as skin contact with water by humans or animals. Drinking water from Sru Lake is especially dangerous.

  • Spain. August 30th: Two Team Sky riders have quit the Tour of Spain during the third stage having been left sick by a mystery illness that has swept through the team.Three other team members also have been seriously affected by unremitting vomiting.
  • Bury, England. September 1st: An 82-year old woman has died from Salmonella poisoning after an outbreak among guests who attended a wedding at the Hilton Suite in Prestwich on August 8th. Three other guests also were taken ill, but have recovered. The wedding guests were served by outside caterers, who are cooperating with the Health Protection Agency's investigation into the incident.
  • Kaliningrad, Russia. September 1st: During the previous week, 171 cases of acute intestinal infections were reported, including illness among children attending 13 kindergartens.
  • Khmelnytsky, Russia. September 1st: Forty-four (out of 110) wedding guests, including seven children, were hospitalized with symptoms of food poisoning at the end of August.

Asia, Africa and the Pacific Islands
  • Manila, Philippines. August 25th: The Philippines Bureau of Food and Drugs has published a Recommended Code of Practice for the processing and handling of purple yam (ube) jam (halaya).
  • Manila, Philippines. August 27th: The Philippines Bureau of Food and Drugs has published a Recommended Code of Practice for the processing and handling of smoked fish.
  • Hong Kong. August 31st: The Centre for Food Safety has released the findings of its food safety report for July. Of the 4,900 food samples tested, 13 samples were found to be unsatisfactory and the overall satisfactory rate was 99.7%.
  • Ludhiana, India. September 1st: An outbreak of gastrointestinal disease has sent 34 people to local hospitals. The outbreak is based on sewage backups due to flooding. In the last five days, 19 people have died.
  • Perak, Malaysia. September 1st: Thirty-nine students in Perak allegedly suffered food poisoning after eating nasi lemak at their school canteen in Sungai Siput on Monday. The State Health Department has taken food samples for testing.

Australia and New Zealand
  • Castle Hill, NSW, Australia. August 30th: The Castle Taj Indian Restaurant in Castle Hill was fined $7,500 plus costs for six breaches of the Food Act relating to the unsafe storage of food, unclean premises and lack of proper hand washing facilities.
  • Canberra, Australia. September 1st: A Norovirus outbreak has forced one ward of Canberra Hospital to be closed off in order to limit the spread of the highly infectious gastrointestinal virus.

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