14 June 2001
Move rules tighter in virus counties

By FWi staff

MOVEMENT controls have been tightened in parts of Cumbria, Somerset and North Yorkshire to halt the spread of foot-and-mouth disease.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has acted in the face of the refusal of the virus to die out in certain parts of the country.

Movement of animals and people between farms is believed to be the cause of a number of the recent cases.

In Cumbria, new restrictions in the Penrith area extend controls already in place around Clitheroe and Settle, North Yorkshire.

All movement licences have been suspended, although vets may allow movement to alleviate serious welfare problems.

Movement restrictions within 10km new infected premises have been introduced in Bridgwater, Somerset, and Cleveland, North Yorkshire.

Short-distance occupational licences will remain valid in these areas, however. Restrictions will be reviewed after 14 days.

The measures apply with immediate effect to all journeys which begin or end in the new areas from Thursday (14 June).

The new restrictions do not apply to animals moving directly to slaughter and under the Livestock Welfare Disposal Scheme, said a DEFRA statement.

Chief Veterinary Officer Jim Scudamore urged farmers to remain vigilant in checking stock and minimising the risk of infection.

“It is vital that no one relaxes their guard,” he said.

Farmers should prevent contact between livestock and maintain rigorous standards for cleansing and disinfecting visitors, equipment and vehicles.

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