June 20, 2024

Potters Pond Campylobacter Outbreak in Rhode Island Sickens Seven

A Potters Pond Campylobacter outbreak has closed the area, which is used for shellfish harvesting, in Rhode Island after seven people got sick with the bacterial infection, according to the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management and the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH). Potters Pond is located in South Kingston, Rhode Island. The pond is going to remain closed until further notice.

Potters Pond Campylobacter Outbreak in Rhode Island Sickens Seven

An investigation linked the illnesses to shellfish harvested in the area. A shellfish sample collected by RIDOH tested positive for Campylobacter Iari. The shellfish sample doses not match the illnesses from the investigation, however, the positive shellfish sample does indicate the presence of Campylobacter in the pond. More samples are being collected and tested.

Two of the patients have tested positive for Campylobacter Jejuni, a different serotype of the pathogen. Those sickened ate raw shellfish between August 11 and August 19, 2021.

Government officials have contacted all commercial harvesters ins the area to make sure that any product harvested during this time frame is not sold at restaurants and markets. Officials are urging recreational harvesters who harvested shellfish in Potters Pond between September 9, 2021 and September 11, 2021, to discard the shellfish or avoid consuming them raw or undercooked. The pond had been closed for some time before September 9th because of heavy rain.

Shellfish is safer to eat when it is coked to a final internal temperature of at least 145°F. Quick steaming is not enough to prevent gastrointestinal illnesses. And remember that raw oysters and shellfish that are contaminated with pathogens still look, smell, and taste normal.

Symptoms of a Campylobacter infection include fever, stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea that is often bloody. People usually start feeling sick two to five days after infection, and symptoms usually last about a week. One of the serious long term complications of this infection is Guillain Barre syndrome, which can lead to paralysis.

If you consumed shellfish from that pond and have been ill with those symptoms, see your doctor. You may be part of this Potters Pond Campylobacter outbreak. You can report your illness to RIDOH by calling 401-222-2749 during business hours and 401-276-8046 after hours.

Pritzker Hageman Food Safety Lawyers

If you or a loved one have been sickened with a Campylobacter infection after eating shellfish, please contact our experienced attorneys for help at 1-888-377-8900 or 612-338-0202.

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