Updated: Friday, 29 Jan 2010, 10:51 AM CST
Published : Friday, 29 Jan 2010, 10:50 AM CST
(CNN) - State Representative James Tokioka did some research and drafted a bill that prohibits catching, selling or even possessing walu in Hawaii.
"I talked [to] many people who sell fish, some of the hotel who [buys] fish, they are aware of it and they're not buying it anymore," said Rep. Tokioka.
Tokioka said people have shared their nightmares of severe diarrhea after consuming a large portion of the fish. The oily walu or Escolar contains a high-level of wax esters in its tissue that are beneficial to its deep-sea survival, but can be unkind to humans.
"I've never had it, but the people that I've talked to said you can't control it," said Rep. Tokioka.
Native Hawaiians called the fish Maku'u or exploding intestines. It is banned in Japan and Italy.
"I'm not one for banning anything but if it creates a public hazard a public safety hazard with many people than I think this definitely something that needs to have further discussion," said Rep. Tokioka.
Doctors are embracing the legislation.
"I think if restaurants can't police themselves or if they're the victims from suppliers it will just clean-up the process from A-to-Z and its really the consumer who will benefit," said Dr. James Ireland, Assistant Professor at the John A. Burns School of Medicine.
Dr. Ireland has treated several walu victims.
"One lady had such bad diarrhea she had an accident in her pants, an adult, her husband had to go the emergency room I mean it's pretty serious," said Dr. Ireland.
Rep. Tokioka said even if the bill is watered down to just requiring better labeling, he hopes more people are educated about the dangers of the fish.