In 1942 two children and an adult died after eating mussels and butter clams contaminated with PSP. The shellfish were collected along the Strait of Juan de Fuca and because of the deaths WDFW closed the Strait to recreational shellfish harvest from April 1 to October 31 each year.
In 2002 WDFW and DOH worked to replace this regulatory closure with a management system based on actual biotoxin data. Clallam MRC became involved and collected shellfish samples every two weeks from several locations on the Strait west of Dungeness Spit. Based on this effort recreational summertime shellfish harvesting in the Strait was opened up for the first time in more than 40 years.