Foot and Mouth Disease
You may have heard that the United Kingdom is currently experiencing an
outbreak of an animal disease called Foot and Mouth Disease. In case
this is concerning you we would like to make the following observations.
So, if you stay out of rural areas while visiting the UK, there should be no
risk to your own health or of taking the disease back to your home country.
If you were hoping to visit rural areas, in most cases that will still be
possible. If you follow instructions and avoid farm animals, there should be
no problems. If you would like any further information, please visit the UK
Co-ordination Centre web site.
- The outbreak appears to be dying back. There are still some new cases
appearing but the number is generally decreasing.
- Foot and Mouth Disease is not a problem for human health.
- Although widespread across the British Isles the disease is by no means
everywhere. The main pockets of infection have been in Devon (part of
south-west England), Cumbria in the north-west of England (also known as
The Lake District), and Dumfries and Galloway (part of south-west
Scotland). There have been very few cases in the east of Scotland (where
Edinburgh and Livingston are located) or in the more northerly parts
- The country is not covered in smoke from burning animal carcasses. Again,
the burning of carcasses and the resulting smoke was very localised and has
now almost completely ceased.
- The disease is not present in cities. The only tangible sign in cities
might be zoos taking precautions against infection of their animals. Other
tourist attractions in the cities are unaffected.
- Many tourist attractions in the rural areas are also
open for business
though there may be a few restrictions.
Last updated on 25 May 2001.