The Louisiana Department of Health will close oyster harvest areas 1-23, which are located from Lake Borne in St. Bernard Parish to Oyster Bayou in Terrebonne Parish, effective at sunset on Friday, October 4, 2013.
This is a precautionary closure because Tropical Storm Karen, which is expected to make landfall overnight, could cause flooding in coastal parishes that would cause natural contaminants to be washed into rivers, bayous and streams, where they can then flow into the oyster-growing areas.
These shellfish-growing areas will remain closed until such time as state health officials determine the waters are clear and within approved area criteria established by the National Shellfish Sanitation Program.
LDH Secretary Kathy Kliebert, Assistant Secretary for Public Health J.T. Lane and Dr. Jimmy Guidry, State Health Officer, today signed the order to close these oyster-growing waters in advance of Tropical Storm Karen's anticipated landfall.
Water standards for oyster harvesting are set by the Interstate Shellfish Sanitation Conference. LDH has the authority to close these waters under LSA-R.S. 40:5, 3.