(Pasco, WA) -- The Washington State Department of Agriculture says they've detected the first "presumptive positive" case of avian influenza, better known as bird flu, at a facility inside the Benton-Franklin Health District. Employees at the facility, which is not being identified, are being monitored for symptoms and offered medication. BFHD says the risk for humans to catch the avian flu is very low. No human cases have been recorded in Washington State.

Separating The Affected Birds

BFHD says the state Department of Agriculture has quarantined the affected property, and the plan is to euthanize all the birds on the premises, which number in the thousands. This is a necessary step, say authorities, to ensure the affected birds don't enter the food supply. Health officials have alerted owners of surrounding flocks within about 6 miles of the issue. For consumers BFHD recommends keeping your family safe by following proper poultry food safety standards. Always wash your hands and sanitize equipment and cook stations. Do not wash poultry or eggs. Keep raw meat separate from cooked meat. Raw meat should be stored at 40 degrees or lower in the fridge, or 0 degrees or lower in the freezer. Make sure poultry is cooked through entirely with an internal temperature of 165 degrees.

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