TACLOBAN CITY - Two children died after eating shellfish contaminated with red tide in the province of Samar, the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) reported.
On July 17, a family of seven from Barangay Cagutsan, Sierra Island in Catbalogan City fell ill after eating penshell, locally known as "sarad." The family's 11-year-old female member died the same day.
Another family from Barangay San Andres of the same city also got sick after eating mussels or "tahong" bought from a market in Catbalogan City.
Two of their children experienced gastro-intestinal symptoms like vomiting and stomachache and were immediately brought to a hospital. However, the 5-year-old child died due to dehydration.
The BFAR on May 27 issued a shellfish ban in Irong-irong Bay and Cambatutay Bay, both covering the towns of Catbalogan City and Tarangan, Samar.
Maqueda and Villareal bays in Samar and Carigara Bay in Leyte are among those affected by red tide already. Yesterday, BFAR added Matarinao Bay in Eastern Samar to the list of red tide affected areas.
Because of this, BFAR issued a strong warning to the public to refrain from collecting and eating shellfish from the said areas.