The state-owned Polish Waters (WP) company urged local residents and tourists not to enter the river, not to catch fish and to keep dogs away from the Oder, Polish state news agency PAP reported.
Masses of dead fish were first spotted floating in the Oder near the southwestern city of Oława in late July, officials said.
So far, some 5 tons of dead fish have been taken out of the Oder near Oława, according to Polish Waters.
Mass die-offs of fish have also been spotted some 200 km down the river, near the western city of Głogów and the village of Cigacice, the PAP news agency reported.
The scale of the die-offs there was still being determined, according to officials.
'Nine tons of dead fish'
Marta Gregorczyk, an activist with the global environmental group Greenpeace, estimated that some nine tons of dead fish have already been taken out of the Oder, saying that “it’s one of the biggest ecological disasters in Poland in years.”
Gregorczyk stated: “Evidence suggests that the Oder’s waters have been contaminated by a chemical substance.”
She added: “Whatever happened, it’s clear that it will take years, if not decades, to rebuild the ecosystem."
Meanwhile, the head of the Regional Environmental Protection Inspectorate in the southwestern city of Wrocław notified prosecutors about the die-offs.
The agency was also carrying out its own probe into the causes of the disaster, the PAP news agency reported.
Source: PAP, businessinsider.com.pl
Click on the audio player above for a report by Radio Poland’s Piotr Miszczuk containing an interview with Piotr Nieznański, Conservation Policy Director at WWF Poland.