SAN FRANCISCO - Many crabbers stayed off the water yesterday at the start of the Dungeness crab season amid health concerns due to last week's oil spill in San Francisco Bay.
Crab catchers and buyers at the Fisherman's Wharf said the bad publicity surrounding the spill means many consumers won't want to eat crab from the region.
Local crabbers had asked the governor to delay the opening of the entire commercial crab fishery. But the state announced Wednesday that only the San Francisco Bay and waters within 3 miles of the coastline, from San Mateo County to Point Reyes, would be closed. Dungeness crab, a delicacy, is usually caught more than 3 miles offshore.
Miles of beaches are still shut down after the freighter Cosco Busan struck the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge in heavy fog on Nov. 7, spilling 58,000 gallons of oil into the bay.