How A Viral Japanese Activity Endangered 500+ Unsuspecting Tourists

How A Viral Japanese Activity Endangered 500+ Unsuspecting Tourists

A fun activity turned sour for tourists in Japan recently. Instead of enjoying themselves in the beautiful Ishikawa Prefecture, they were left battling severe sickness—all because of a viral tourist event gone wrong.

Ishikawa Prefecture | 663highland

The incident occurred in Ōtaki Sōmen, a restaurant that overlooks the river and only opens during the summer months. This year, however, it closed early after 93 guests reported experiencing food poisoning and over 500 more had concerning symptoms.

One woman reported, “I had to keep going to the bathroom every 30 minutes. My fever was high, and I had diarrhea. My fever was as high as 39.8 degrees.” The tourists affected range between ages two and fifty. Luckily, authorities expect everyone to safely recover.

Takachiho, Miyazaki Prefecture | TOSHI.K/PIXTA

But how did this mass food poisoning happen in the first place? It can be traced to the restaurant’s specialty being Nagashi Somen, thin noodles that flow down a bamboo chute filled with ice-cold water.

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Despite a clean 30-year record, the restaurant failed to notice that the water this time around was contaminated.

| mippe589/PIXTA

The local health center took samples of the water and discovered that it tested positive for campylobacter bacteria, Japan’s most common bacteria that causes food poisoning. Authorities have reason to believe that the contaminated water could be due to boar droppings as they were recently spotted in the area.

Wild boars | Nippon

Ōtaki Sōmen has since issued an apology to the victims. They promised to return next year after thorough testing so that the incident does not occur again. If you were planning to try out this activity, you may want to think twice!

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In related news, learn why it’s illegal for Japanese bus drivers to greet each other in the article below.

Japanese Bus Drivers Are Forbidden From Greeting Each Other Because Of One Tragic Reason

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