UK: FMD found in broken pipe near laboratory

06-09-2007 | |

An investigation into the Foot-and-Mouth Disease (FMD) outbreaks in the British county of Surrey revealed that the virus was present in a pipe on a laboratory site close by.

The British Health and Safety Executive found lapses in bio-security at the site, according to a report from the BBC News website.

Transport and trade ban
In the middle of July, the FMD outbreaks caused a transport and trade ban for a couple of weeks this summer. Although the disease was found in cattle, also 280 pigs had to be culled at one of the infected properties.

The site claims that virus traces have been found in a pipe running from Merial Animal Health to a treatment plant operated by a government-run laboratory on the same complex.

It is suggested that the pipe could have been damaged by tree roots before flooding caused pushed the traces to the surface, the website says.

So far, it is unclear how the FMD virus found its way on to the meadows a few kilometres away. The investigators said that contractors used a country road next to the farmland where the first outbreak happened.

Related web sites:
• Health and Safety Authority
• Merial Animal Health

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