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Investigation of the possible spread of foot-and-mouth disease virus by the burning of animal carcases on open pyres
  1. H. J. Champion, BSc,MPhil, FRMetS1,
  2. J. Gloster1,
  3. I. S. Mason, BVetMed,CertSAD, DECVD, PhD,MRCVS2

    worked on secondment with the Animal Health and Veterinary Group of DEFRA during the 2001 UK foot-and-mouth epidemic

    ,
  4. R. J. Brown, BSc, PhD3

    worked on secondment with the Animal Health and Veterinary Group of DEFRA during the 2001 UK foot-and-mouth epidemic

    ,
  5. A. I. Donaldson, MVB,MA, PhD, ScD, MRCVS4,
  6. D. B. Ryall, BSc, CPhys1 and
  7. A. J. M. Garland, BVMS,PhD, MRCVS5
  1. 1 Met Office, London Road, Bracknell, Berkshire RG12 2SZ
  2. 2 Veterinary Dermatology Consultants, End House, Silkmore Lane, West Horsley, Surrey KT24 6JQ
  3. 3 Defence Science and Technology Laboratories, Farnborough, Hampshire GU14 OAX
  4. 4 Institute for Animal Health, Pirbright, Woking, Surrey GU24 ONF
  5. 5 Collingwood, Dawney Hill, Pirbright, Woking, Surrey GU24 OJB

Abstract

An atmospheric dispersion model was used to predict the airborne spread and concentrations of foot-and-mouth disease virus within the plumes generated by 11 pyres built to burn infected carcases during the epidemic of 2001 in the UK. On the basis of assumptions about the quantity of virus emitted during the three hours after the pyres were built, and the threshold concentration of virus required to cause an infection in cattle, it was concluded that none of the disease breakdowns which occurred under the plumes was due to the spread of virus from the pyres.

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