Algae blooms prompt closure of all MS beaches and oyster reefs - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

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Algae blooms prompt closure of all MS beaches and oyster reefs

MISSISSIPPI SOUND (WLOX) -

State health and safety officials have issued closures for all Mississippi beaches and oyster reefs due to a breakout of potentially harmful algae blooms in the Mississippi Sound.

Officials with the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources ordered all oyster reefs to close by 4 p.m. Friday.

Officials with the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality issued a preemptive closure of all beaches along the Mississippi Gulf Coast. MDEQ said the measures are being taken because of possible irritants causing respiratory problems and irritations to the eyes, nose skin and throat.

“We’re erring on the side of public safety,” MDMR Executive Director Jamie Miller said. “Algae blooms are unusual in this area and at this time of year, but we want to make sure residents are safe.”

Officials say the areas will remain closed until further notice. MDMR scientists will continue to monitor the situation and will reopen the oyster reefs when samples indicate healthy harvest conditions.

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