Algeria: Nearly 150 bathers intoxicated after suspected contamination

Local media reported on Monday that nearly 150 people in Tennes, northwestern Algeria, became ill after bathing on Sunday and had to be hospitalized due to possible marine pollution.

Three beaches were closed, as well as a local desalination plant, and an investigation was opened by the attorney general of Cliff’s Court, the villa (province) on which Tennessee depends.

“A total of 149 people had nausea, fever, redness in their eyes and were admitted to the hospital,” Chelef’s Wali (prefect) Lakhdar Sedas told private channel Ichorouk TV.

About fifty of them left the hospital, he said.

Water pollution may be causing the inconvenience and a cargo ship carrying cattle that recently arrived at the port of Tennessee is suspected, Mr. Sedas said.

According to private information site Ennahar Online, it is a cargo ship flying the Tanzanian flag, Barholm II, which departed from the port of Sete (south of France).

A team of divers has been sent to the spot in search of the poisonous water. Twenty-eight divers and seven civil defense agents were poisoned.

According to an official press release, a delegation from the Environment Ministry took air and water samples at “harbours (Tennus), beaches, wadis” and facilities known to cause pollution.

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