Increasing domoic acid levels in razor clams will delay the reopening of Oregon’s most popular beds in Clatsop County Oct. 1 and shut down this week’s scheduled digging on southwest Washington beaches.
The Oregon closure extends from the Washington border south to Cascade Head north of Lincoln City.
Both states are cautious about dangerous toxins and in the past have closed beaches for extended periods — several months in some cases.
Oregon’s testing this week tipped the maximum allowed level of the acid, precipitating the closure notice. Washington tests in much the same way, although that state’s delay was based on a spike that didn’t quite reach the maximum level for human consumption, but came close.
Oregon’s next tests will be done next week. Two consecutive safe tests are required to allow digging.