80,000 gallons of sewage flows into Sinclair Inlet

BREMERTON, Wash. -- Health officials are warning the public to avoid contact with the water of Sinclair Inlet near Bremerton after 80,000 gallons of sewage spilled from Naval Base Kitsap.

The Kitsap Public Health District says the spill occurred during a two-week period ending Tuesday and that the advisory will remain in effect until Aug. 21.

An initial notice from the district attributed the spill to the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, but shipyard spokesman J.C. Mathews said Wednesday that was incorrect, and that the spill originated at the Navy base. The Washington Department of Ecology confirmed that.

No information about the cause of spill was immediately released. A spokesman for Naval Base Kitsap did not immediately return a message seeking comment.

Contact with feces-contaminated waters can result in gastroenteritis, skin rashes, upper respiratory infections and other illnesses. Children and the elderly may be more susceptible.