Event Report

Event Description

Biological Hazard in USA on Saturday, 04 May, 2013 at 01:33 (01:33 AM) UTC.

One of three Portugese Man-o-War found washed up on Pawleys Island Friday - and there could be more elsewhere and more on the way. These dangerous jellyfish normally prefer the warmer Gulf Stream waters, but three days of strong onshore winds have blown them toward onto our beaches. A small craft advisory has been in effect for the past two days and continue through Saturday. Coastal winds have been out of the northeast at 15-25 mph with gusts over 30 mph have since Thursday, and will continue into the weekend. Detached tentacles and dead specimens (including those that wash up on shore) can sting just as painfully as a live organism in the water - and may be trouble for hours or even days after the death of the organism or the detachment of tentacles.
Biohazard name: Jellyfish invasion
Biohazard level: 1/4 Low
Biohazard desc.: Bacteria and viruses including Bacillus subtilis, canine hepatitis, Escherichia coli, varicella (chicken pox), as well as some cell cultures and non-infectious bacteria. At this level precautions against the biohazardous materials in question are minimal, most likely involving gloves and some sort of facial protection. Usually, contaminated materials are left in open (but separately indicated) waste receptacles. Decontamination procedures for this level are similar in most respects to modern precautions against everyday viruses (i.e.: washing one's hands with anti-bacterial soap, washing all exposed surfaces of the lab with disinfectants, etc). In a lab environment, all materials used for cell and/or bacteria cultures are decontaminated via autoclave.
Status: confirmed

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