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Sewage Spill – Kawakawa, Bay of Islands

Public Health Warning

October 21, 2018

Sewage Spill – Kawakawa, Bay of Islands


The Public Health Unit (PHU), Northland District Health Board, has issued a public health warning following a sewage spill at Kawakawa Hospital.

The public are advised not to collect or consume shellfish harvested from the Kawakawa River/lower Waikare area - which includes areas upstream of Okiato Pt, including the lower reaches of the Waikere inlet west of Marriott Island and Waikino creek - until further notice.

Any shellfish collected in the last 5 days may be contaminated, and should be discarded.

Consumption of contaminated shellfish following a sewage spill commonly causes ‘gastro’ – an illness characterised by diarrhoea, vomiting and tummy pain – and often caused by a virus such as norovirus.

This illness is usually self-limiting, but call Healthline or see your doctor if you are concerned.
Northland PHU will keep you updated on when it is safe to gather shellfish again.

Members of the public with any queries about shellfish safety should call Whangarei Hospital on 09 4304 100 and ask to speak with the on-call Health Protection Officer.

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