Florida: Man dies after eating ‘one in a billion’ bad oyster

Two people have died from eating oysters in Florida so far this month (Credit: Getty Images)

A man ate a bad oyster described as “one in a billion” and died.

The man was dining at the Rustic Inn Crabhouse in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, when he ate the oyster that gave him a bacterial infection. He became ill with Vibrio, according to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.

“He had one in a billion that was bad,” Gary Oreal said. “I feel terrible.”

It was the first time such a tragedy has happened to any guest at the restaurant, Oreal said.

“In 60 years, we’ve served a couple of billion oysters, and we’ve never had anybody get sick like this guy,” he said.

Oreal said the state Department of Health inspected the kitchen after the incident and it went “with flying colours”. He issued a warning about eating oysters – but said that won’t stop many shellfish fans from eating them.

“Oysters are the top of the mountain for dangerous foods to eat,” he said. “I’ve been eating them all my life and will continue to do so. But you’re putting yourself at risk when you do that.’

The man apparently worked at the restaurant years ago.

He has been identified as Roger ‘Rocky’ Pinckney and tested positive for oxycodone, opiates and cannabis, according to the Broward County Medical Examiner. Vibrio was also found in his blood, according to WTVJ.

Pinckney is the second person in Florida to die from eating a raw oyster this month.

Rodney Jackson is one of two people to die from oysters in August in Florida

Rodney Jackson is one of two people to die from oysters in August in Florida (Image: Studer Community Institute)

Studer Community Institute’s director of business engagement, Rodney Jackson, contracted Vibrio from eating oysters he bought from Maria’s Fresh Seafood Market, according to the Pensacola News Journal. He died on August 9.

Oysters eaten by Jackson and the unidentified man were both sourced from Louisiana, the New York Post reported.

Infections from vibriosis usually occur in warm weather, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website states. The infection usually causes vomiting and diarrhea, rather than more serious health problems. However, vibrosis cases can occur in any weather, according to the CDC.

“An oyster that contains harmful bacteria does not look, smell, or taste any different than any other oyster,” the CDC says.

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