HPS and Scottish Agricultural College have re-issued advice on precautions for reducing risk of E. coli O157 infection for farm and rural residents, for event organisers, and for visitors to farms or other parts of the countryside.
Some simple but effective precautions can help both rural families and visitors, to reduce their risk of infection, whilst still benefitting from living, working and holidaying in the countryside. These include the need to minimise contact with animal faeces, and the importance of handwashing.
In addition, detailed guidance for farmers, and for organisers of group visits to farms or petting zoos, is also available. The lessons of past outbreaks in Scotland resulted in further advice to farmers and group event leaders that livestock and faeces should be cleared from land used for grazing, at least 3 weeks before camping and other public events are held there.
Although some of the guidance focuses on Open Farms, the principles apply to other types of farm, or to locations where animals are present such as stables, rural shows, etc.
This guidance and advice, produced by Health & Safety Executive (HSE), Health Protection Scotland, Scottish Government, Scottish Agricultural College and other agencies, can be obtained as follows:
Royal Highland Education Trust