Author Topic: Smell the fish before you eat it, say officials  (Read 883 times)

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Offline thaiga

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Smell the fish before you eat it, say officials
« on: July 31, 2013, 12:15:59 PM »
After the oil spill near Rayong, the Fisheries Department has one piece of advice for seafood lovers: "Don't avoid it, just sniff it first to see if it smells of crude oil."

Photo : Watcharachai Klaipong

Meanwhile, the Public Health Ministry has vowed to check if seafood sold in the market is contaminated.

"Don't panic. Normally, aquatic animals swim to safety when they detect something abnormal around their habitat," Fisheries Department director-general Wimol Jantrarota said yesterday.

He said the fish that had washed up around Koh Samet's Ao Phrao beach had died because they were unable to escape in time.

According to Wimol, aquatic animals exposed to the oil would smell bad even after being cooked.

Speaking while on a working trip overseas, Public Health Minister Pradit Sintavanarong said information available in other countries where similar accidents had happened showed that the presence of the carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon chemical was higher in marine life in the wake of oil spills.

"So, we will check the quality of the seawater and contamination of the seafood to protect people," Pradit said.

He added that the adverse impacts of the spill could be cut down if the clean-up and recovery operations were implemented quickly and properly.

Fishing industry suffers

Meanwhile, Rayong Small-Trawler Fisheries Association president Jaturas Iamworanirun said the spill had hit the livelihoods of the local fishermen very badly.

"Each fishing trawler used to catch between Bt2,000 and Bt3,000 worth of squid per trip, but now they barely get five squids per trip," he said, adding that most marine animals had either swum away or died.

According to him, there are about 1,300 small fishing trawlers in Rayong that have sustained losses of about Bt5.4 million.

Jaturas said small fishing trawlers usually travelled to a spot some 12 nautical miles from the shore and paid Bt800 for fuel per trip.

"If they have to travel farther, they will have to pay more for petrol, perhaps as much as Bt1,800 per trip," he said.

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Offline thaiga

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Re: Tests conducted on seafood from areas near oil spill
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2013, 12:24:37 PM »
A PUBLIC Health Ministry inspection of seafood collected from areas near Ban Phe on the coast in Rayong - near sites hit by a crude oil spill in the Gulf - has found no mercury or heavy metal in excess of safe levels.

Food 'safe' so far urine samples taken from volunteers doing cleanup on Samet.

Tests had been done on urine samples from 252 of 1,522 people exposed to oil during the ongoing cleanup on Ao Phrao beach on Koh Samet, but no irregularities had been found, Health Minister Pradit Sinthawanarong said yesterday.

Eight samples of green mussel and fish were collected from markets in the district and nearby tambon Klaeng. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon and mercury, which are harmful to human health, were not found in the |samples.

Tests for three other toxic heavy metals - arsenic, lead and cadmium - were being done, with results expected to be known next week, Pradit said.

People who gave urine samples include volunteer cleaners, plus members of the media, executives from relevant agencies who visited Ao Phrao or Koh Samet.

They had been registered for follow-up tests over the next five years, and annual examination, he said.

The ministry was monitoring the health of local people to give them physical and psychological care, if needed, the minister said, as well as educating them on how to choose safe seafood and drinking water.

The Department of Marine and Coastal Resources is conducting an inspection of seven aspects of the coastal ecosystem - oceanography, coastal ecology, coral reefs, marine seagrass, mangroves, rare marine life and seabirds - to determine if it has been affected by the spill, and by how much, Natural Resources and Environment Minister Vichet Kasemthongsri said.

Results from this study would decide how much environmental damage has been done, if any, as that would be used for reference in any future lawsuits demanding compensation, he said.

The department is working on cleaning the beach at Ao Phrao and dealing with oil in the sea and near Koh Samet, he said.

Existing infrastructure, including waste-water treatment operations and landscaping on the island - famous among tourists - would be re-organised.

Vichet spoke after inspecting Ao Phrao yesterday, as well as Lam Ya-Koh Samet National Park off Rayong. Meanwhile, he said departmental officials were also giving advice on how to conduct a further recovery and treat toxic leaks to PTT Global Chemical, which owns the pipeline that was the cause of the leak.

the nation
Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.