February 10, 2022
Media Contact: Northern Region Public Information Officer Lorrie Andrew-Spear, Lorrie-Andrew-Spear@vdh.virginia.gov
Virginia Department of Health Extends Closure of Upper Machodoc Creek to Shellfish Harvesting
(RICHMOND, Va.)— The Virginia Department of Health announced today that the temporary shellfish closure in Upper Machodoc Creek in King George County will be extended due to continued elevated levels of bacteria following a release of partially treated sewage on January 20, 2022. Due to potential microbiological pollution hazards, shellfish harvested within the area defined by the emergency closure continue to be unacceptable for consumption.
The temporary emergency closure is effective February 10, 2022. The Division of Shellfish Safety will continue to work with the Department of Environmental Quality to monitor the wastewater treatment plant and water quality to determine when shellfish harvesting areas can be reopened.
Maps of the affected areas are posted on the Division of Shellfish Safety’s home page at www.vdh.virginia.gov/shellfish/. The affected shellfish are bivalve mollusks including oysters and clams, but not crabs or fin fish.
Ingesting shellfish taken from the closed areas at this time could cause gastrointestinal illnesses including norovirus, hepatitis A and shigellosis.
For more information on shellfish closures, see the frequently asked questions on shellfish condemnations at www.vdh.virginia.gov/environmental-health/shellfish-sanitation/frequently-asked-questions/.