PROVIDENCE - Based on acceptable results of shellfish samples collected on Monday in the Kickemuit River, the Department of Environmental Management announces that shellfish harvesting in the Kickemuit River will re-open at sunrise on Thursday, July 24, barring additional rainfall greater than one-half inch in a 24-hour period.
The emergency closure was necessitated by a sewage overflow on June 26th that was caused by a crack in the force main valve at the Town of Bristol's Kickemuit River pump station on Kickemuit Avenue. The force main was repaired at 6:30 p.m. on June 26, and the discharge of sewage to the river ceased at that time. Based on information gathered from city staff, an estimated maximum volume of 10,000 gallons of untreated sewage entered the Kickemuit River over a 24-hour period before crews stopped the overflow.
The following area of the Kickemuit River will re-open to shellfish harvesting at sunrise on July 24: All waters of the Kickemuit River north of a line at the so-called Narrows in Bristol from the utility pole located at the end of Narrows Road in Bristol on the western shoreline to the stone wall at the most southwest point of land on the opposite side of the Narrows on Touisset Neck (east side of Bristol Narrows).
The precautionary swimming advisory issued by the Department of Health and DEM as a result of the sewage overflow, advising people to refrain from contact recreation along the Kickemuit River in Rhode Island, was lifted on July 1st following acceptable water column sampling results.
DEM maintains a recorded telephone information line, 222-2900, with the most updated information on shellfish closures.