Local Bay Opens After Reports of Oyster-related Sickness - SLIDE SHOW

By: Eyewitness News, Jerry Askin Email
By: Eyewitness News, Jerry Askin Email

UPDATE 05-11-2011 at 6:30pm by Jerry Askin

The area near the St. George Island Bridge opened for fishing Wednesday. This comes after it was closed for several weeks when eight people reported being ill after eating possibly contaminated oysters from that section of the Apalachicola Bay.

Rick Bickek, who visited from Chicago just to eat Florida's oysters says, "We've come down here on vacation and to eat the oysters because I hear they're the best in the world."

We visited a well-known oyster restaurant in Franklin County to find out what folks had to say about the possible oyster contamination.

Terri Brooks and her husband traveled down from Ohio just to get a taste of what they say are the best oysters in the country. And she says there's nothing wrong with the oysters on her plate.

Brooks says, "I'm sure these establishments take every precaution that they can. Things do happen, but I'm not afraid at all."

"It's no contamination in our oysters. They're fresh and clean and y'all come on down and enjoy yourselves," says David Burke who works at Boss Oysters.

Larry Robins who flew down from Pensacola for the day just to have some fresh Florida oysters says he trusts the food and will keep coming back.

Robins says, "It's the best I ever had. They serve them in Key West. They serve them in Pensacola where we're from and they're just no other oysters like Apalachicola oysters."

The reports of those eight people being ill after eating the raw oysters dates back to somewhere around the end of March and early April of this year.

The test recently done came back negative and shows that all of the oysters in that area of the bay are clean.

Franklin County, Florida - 5-11 Noon -

The Apalachicola Bay area, near the St George Island bridge, is back open for fishing after several people reportedly got sick after eating oysters from there.

Area 1642 reopened this morning after being closed for fishing since April 29th.

Eight people reported becoming ill after eating raw oysters from that area on the Apalachicola Bay sometime between late march and the first of April. Symptoms of infection include nausea, vomiting and diarrhea within a week of consumption. The bacteria is not considered life-threatening though it can cause severe dehydration.

The US Department of Agriculture now says the suspected area has been tested and the results came back negative of any contamination of vibrio chlorae serogroup 075.

Tonight on Eyewitness News, we'll talk with some coastal restaurants about their scare over possible contaminated oysters.

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