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Vibrio cholerae found in fish stall tank water

     The Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD) today (November 19) ordered the temporary closure of a fish stall in Sham Shui Po for thorough disinfection following the detection of Vibrio cholerae in a water sample collected from its fish tank.

     The fish stall is located at Lai Wan Market, Sham Shui Po. The water sample was taken from the fish stall on November 13. The test result obtained today confirmed the presence of Vibrio cholerae O1 El Tor serotype Inaba.

     To protect public health, the Director of Food and Environmental Hygiene ordered the immediate closure of the fish stall under the Public Health and Municipal Services Ordinance.

     The fish stall will remain closed for thorough cleansing and disinfection of the premises and fish tank until the Director is satisfied with the overall hygiene condition of the premises and that there is no immediate health hazard. Additionally, the FEHD will step up cleaning operations within the market.

     A department spokesman said, "Vibrio cholerae cannot survive under high temperature and can be killed by thorough cooking."

     To prevent cholera, the spokesman advised people to observe the following guidelines:

* Wash and scrub shellfish thoroughly;
* Clean the seafood and remove the internal organs, and cook thoroughly before consumption;
* Raw and cooked food must be handled with separate sets of utensils to avoid cross-contamination; and
* Raw and cooked food should be stored separately. Cooked food should be placed on the upper shelf of a refrigerator.

     "People should also pay attention to personal and food hygiene," he said.

Ends/Tuesday, November 19, 2013
Issued at HKT 21:32


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