Biosecurity: Vehicles on pig farms
Following a vehicle biosecurity policy should reduce the risk of a disease being brought on to the site.
Vehicle biosecurity applies to all forms of transport entering, approaching or carrying pigs or other material to or from farms.
Information for visitors
- Liaise with farmers and farm staff to ensure that anyone visiting and leaving the site understands the risks
- Stop all unnecessary visits to the farm. Do not enter the farm unless necessary
- Schedule transport so there can be cleaning and downtime after the visit before going to another far
- Where possible, use dedicated transport for swine-dysentery-positive farms
- Give all drivers specific instructions as to the risk of the farms they are visiting
- Plan for good cleaning and disinfection after visiting the farm and allow for appropriate downtime
- Ensure that vehicles attending the farm are adequately and appropriately cleaned and disinfected first. You do not want to transfer other diseases into the farm
- Ensure that the driver has adequate protective clothing and boots and facilities to clean and disinfect these and other equipment that might be used
- Ensure that any equipment to be carried onto the farm is cleaned and disinfected
- Do not take the vehicle onto the farm unless necessary. If it is necessary, try and remove any loose dirt from the vehicle away from the unit and roads, and disinfect. At the perimeter, remove gross contamination from wheels and arches and spray with disinfectant
- Change into protective clothing and boots at entry point. Take care not to contaminate normal clothing and footwear
- Avoid contaminating the cab. Use mats in the footwell that are disposable or that can be disinfected
- Do not re-enter the vehicle with contaminated clothing or footwear
- Try to minimise contamination of the vehicle and equipment by dung, mud or other waste
- Any equipment (e.g. blower hoses or toolboxes) returned to the vehicle should be cleaned and disinfected if possible
- Where applicable, remove and dispose of, or disinfect, foot mats. Wipe clean and disinfect foot pedals, and any other contaminated areas, with disinfectant on cloths. Change out of overalls and protective clothing and leave on the farm, if possible, or clean and disinfect.
- Before going to any other pig unit, the vehicle must be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected using a suitable disinfectant. Try not to contaminate the vehicle with splashback from other vehicles or contaminated ground. Also, take care not to splash contamination onto other vehicles
- Remove and clean any equipment used on the farm, including scrapers, pig boards, blower hoses and toolboxes
- Clean storage spaces in the vehicle, such as boxes and tubes for blower hoses in cleaning and disinfection
- Re-clean and disinfect driver’s cab
- Clean and disinfect boots and overalls used on the farm and also during the cleaning and disinfection programme
- Allow vehicle to dry and stand as long as possible. If the vehicle is to visit another farm, ensure a minimum of overnight standstill
- Clean down and disinfect the area on which your vehicle was cleaned to avoid other vehicles becoming contaminated.
Under no circumstances should lorry drivers collecting pigs enter any pig building
Information for producers and staff
These simple steps can be implemented to improve the biosecurity on your farm and reduce the risk of disease spread from vehicles.
- Define ‘clean’ and ‘dirty’ areas and control all access onto the unit (the clean area) through clear access points
- Provide obvious signs with instructions at access points
- Provide a bell or horn for visitors/delivery drivers to attract attention
- All lorries should be cleaned and disinfected before entering the farm
- A zero-tolerance policy should be given to livestock lorries attempting to enter your farm if they are poorly washed, as diseases can be spread in faecal material
- Install a disinfectant wheel dip at the entrance of the farm. If a wheel dip is not practical, spray the wheels and arches of the vehicle with a knapsack sprayer using an appropriate Defra-approved disinfectant
- Always check the inner wheel rim surface, close to any stub axles or frames.
- Provide adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) for lorry drivers if they are involved in loading pigs. This should include wellington boots, overalls, waterproof trousers and disposable gloves. The drivers’ PPE should not be worn by any farm staff and should be cleaned and disinfected after use. Dispose of any disposable items of clothing
- Provide a disinfectant foot dip with a brush to remove debris on the farm side as well as on the perimeter. All gross faecal material should be removed before using foot dips
- Farm staff should not enter the livestock vehicle unless deemed absolutely necessary, this is particularly important if the lorry has come directly from an abattoir
- If staff must enter the lorry, they should thoroughly clean and disinfect footwear and change PPE before re-entering the farm
- Adequate wash facilities should be provided to allow the driver to wash his hands and boots before and after loading is complete.
- Ideally, site the loading bay on the perimeter of the unit, away from pig buildings and paddocks
- Design or re-design it so that
- It can be easily cleaned
- It’s easy to control pig movements
- There is no contact between farm staff, vehicle and driver
- A simple idea to prevent cross contamination is to paint a line on the loading ramp that distinguishes between the driver and farm areas, neither staff nor drivers should pass beyond this point
- The loading ramp should be designed to ensure that water drains away from the unit after cleaning
- Keep the area around the loading bay clean so that lorries leave your farm clean
- Once a pig has walked onto the livestock trailer, do not allow it to reenter the farm
- The loading ramp, including the sorting area, should be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected after every batch of pigs is loaded and unloaded; ideally, separate PPE should be worn for this task.
Remember, dilution by rainwater, using the wrong concentration and infrequent replenishment reduces the effectiveness of foot dips
AHDB has joined industry in a campaign to promote good cleaning and disinfection of all vehicles associated with livestock.
#MuckFreeTruck promotes the following measures:
- Good cleaning and disinfection of vehicles is one of the basics when it comes to disease prevention. Industry has come together to launch #MuckFreeTruck – a campaign designed to encourage producers, processors and hauliers to do everything they can to keep vehicles clean
- Research has shown that contaminated lorries play a huge role in spreading disease. Putting in the additional time at the wash bay could make the difference between spreading the disease and not.
A collection of resources have been created to help advertise the campaign, these can be found here:
Download the following Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) for further advice on vehicle biosecurity.