HC Deb 22 June 1903 vol 124 cc42-4
MAJOR RASCH (Essex, Chelmsford)

To ask the hon. Member for North Hunts, as representing the President of the Board of Agriculture, whether the landing of cargoes of Argentine animals, at sea when the recent prohibition order was issued, is now complete; how many cargoes have been landed; in how many cases animals affected with foot-and-mouth disease have been detected; and what precautions were taken to prevent the spreading of infection.

Name of Vessel. Date of Arrival. Place of Landing. Animals carried. Animals certified as diseased.
Cattle. Sheep. Cattle. Sheep.
SS. "Heathglen" 7 June Deptford 300 1388 75 54
SS. "Normandy" 10 June Birkenhead 112 920 73
SS. "Virgil" 29 May Deptford 260 1041 32

All the vessels were boarded at the earliest possible moment by a veterinary inspector, by whom a preliminary examination of the animals was made, a detailed examination being carried out on the arrival of the vessel at the wharf. Healthy cargoes were dealt with in the usual manner, the animals being slaughtered within ten days and without leaving the wharf, the manure, broken fodder, etc., being mixed with quicklime. Diseased cargoes were subjected to special precautions. The animals were placed in a part of the wharf specially reserved for the purpose, and slaughter was proceeded with continuously until finished. Slaughtermen and all employed about the infected cargoes were provided with overall clothing, and each man, on leaving the infected portion of the wharf, was thoroughly fumigated, his boots and implements being washed in a solution of carbolic acid. The hides and skins of the animals were disinfected in a similar manner and removed to the tanyards under supervision. The offals, heads, and feet were either destroyed by fire, or immersed in a strong disinfecting solution. Dung, litter, broken fodder, and the sweepings from the lairs and slaughterhouses were disinfected with carbolic acid, well mixed with quicklime, and afterwards discharged into the sea beyond the three-mile limit. Those portions of the wharf

(Answered by Mr. Ailwyn Fellowes.) Thirty-one vessels carrying Argentine cattle, destined for ports in Great Britain, were at sea when the order of the Board of Agriculture prohibiting such importation came into force. All of these have now arrived. Lesions of foot-and-mouth disease in more or less active stages were found in the case of three cargoes, particulars of which are shown in the following schedule:—

with which infected cargoes came into contact were thoroughly disinfected with carbolic acid and quicklime. Two of the ships after discharging their cattle, left for Antwerp and Dunkirk, the authorities there being warned by cable that animals affected with foot-and-mouth disease had been carried. The third vessel, before going into dock, was taken seven miles out to sea, where her temporary fittings were destroyed by fire, the manure thrown overboard, and such portions of the ship as had been in contact with animals thoroughly disinfected under the supervision of one of the Board's inspectors. Everyone on board, before being allowed ashore, was thoroughly fumigated and his boots washed with a carbolic solution.