Foot and Mouth Disease :: UK Government working night and day to eradicate an outbreak of foot and mouth disease in Surrey

The UK Government is working “night and day” to eradicate an outbreak of foot and mouth disease in Surrey, the Prime Minister has said.

Speaking to reporters inside Downing Street after a meeting of Cobra, the civil emergencies committee, the PM thanked rural communities for their “forbearance and patience” and said that the Government was doing everything it could to deal with the outbreak.

“I want to thank the farming communities and indeed all rural communities for their tremendous co-operation and for the forbearance and patience that has been shown in what I know is a very anxious time.”

“We are doing everything in our power to look at the scientific evidence and get to the bottom of this and to eradicate the disease.”

Mr Brown added that the Government’s priorites were to deal with the disease quickly, to coordinate an appropriate response and to identify the source of the infection. An exclusion zone had been established around the farm near Guildford and a cull of affected animals was taking place, he said.

The Prime Minister also said that he understood the “worries and anxieties” in the farming community in light of the major foot and mouth outbreak and cull that took place in 2001. He promised the Government would act “quickly and decisively” and put in place “all measures necessary” to avoid a repeat of the events that caused widespread disruption and economic damage six years ago.

A 10 kilometre monitoring zone has been established around the scene of yesterday’s outbreak in addition to the three kilometre exclusion zone. A ban on the transport of livestock has also been introduced across the country.

More information can be found on the DEFRA website or a special DEFRA helpine on 08459 33 55 77

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