British Triathlon expressed its commitment to collaborating with Sunderland City Council and the health authorities to establish the cause of the illnesses
Photo by Lee Smith/Reuters
(Reuters) – At least 57 participants fell ill after competing in sea swimming events at the World Triathlon Championship Series in Sunderland, North East of England, the Guardian newspaper reported on Saturday.
After a swim off Sunderland’s Roker Beach last weekend, those who fell ill complained that they were suffering from sickness and diarrhea.
The paper reported that the UK Health Security Agency said it would test samples from those affected to establish the cause of the illnesses and any common pathogens.
Australian triathlete Jacob Birtwhistle posted on Instagram earlier this week that he felt unwell after the race.
“Have been feeling pretty rubbish since the race, but I guess that’s what happens when you swim in shit,” adding that he believed the swim should have been canceled.
The triathlon event in Sunderland served as the British leg of the 2023 World Triathlon Championship Series and coincided with the qualification period for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.
Around 2,000 people participated in the race, which also included a family event.
The national governing body, British Triathlon, stated on Thursday its commitment to collaborating with Sunderland City Council and the health authorities to establish the cause of the illnesses.
Water companies in Britain have been facing criticism over raw sewage releases, which have led to the poor quality of rivers and beaches.
(Reporting by Tommy Lund in Gdansk)