At least fourteen dead after eating toxic fish in Madagascar

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Thursday, April 7, 2011

More than 120 people remain ill from the sardines

At least fourteen people have died after eating toxic sardines in Madagascar. The deaths occurred in the town of Toliara, with another similar situation happening 130 km (80.8 mi) away in Sakaraha. The sardines the victims ate belong to the Clupeidae family. As well as the dead, around 120 people have been taken ill after eating the fish according to officials.

Dr Hery Raharisaina, Madagascar's fishing and aquatic resources minister, offered condolence to the families of the victims on behalf of the government. He added in his statement that the government would pay for the medical bills for those who are still hospitalized from the toxic fish and would also supply 100 mattresses to the city of Toliara, as the region's hospital is overcrowded.

Samples of the sardines have been sent to health officials at the Institut Pasteur de Madagascar in the capital city of Antananarivo. Incidents like this have happened before in which researchers have tracked the cause down to the fish eating poisonous seaweed. Madagascar has the third biggest coral system in the world.