There are some simple steps you can take to make sure you are not carrying pests or diseases, such as foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) or other animal diseases, on your clothing and footwear, or vehicles and equipment. These decontamination measures are simple and practical steps you can do, to meet your general biosecurity duty, and help keep FMD out of Australia and Tasmania.
All information provided below is based upon risk minimisation in relation to the introduction of pests and diseases. One key message is that the best biosecurity actions are those that get done, and that disinfection is largely ineffective if the item you’re treating isn’t clean and free from mud or dirt in the first instance.
Travelling back from FMD-infected countries (including Indonesia)?
Footwear and outdoor equipment
- Remove any bulk mud or dirt with a brush or boot pick, then clean thoroughly with warm water (~75˚C) and detergent.
- Make sure there is no mud or dirt visible in the tread or on the sides of the shoes, rinse off detergent or allow to dry.
- Use a disinfectant for FMD on your shoes or equipment once they have been thoroughly cleaned.
- Ensure clothing is free from any build-up or mud or dirt.
- Soiled clothing, or clothing that has been worn in rural or agricultural areas of FMD-infected countries should be washed with detergent on a heavy wash cycle, and fully dried in the sun or a hot drier.
- Remove any bulk mud or dirt with a brush or similar, then clean thoroughly with warm water (~75˚C) and detergent.
- Rinse off detergent or allow to dry.
- Use a disinfectant for FMD on the items once they have been thoroughly cleaned.
If you have clothing, footwear, or equipment that may be reasonably suspected of being a carrier of FMD, and you have no facility to adequately clean and disinfect the items – they should be left behind and not brought to Australia or Tasmania. For more information on the current restrictions for bringing items back to Tasmania, please see information about the General Biosecurity Direction on our webpage Current Biosecurity Alerts, or alternatively Travelling to Tasmania from Indonesia or Bali.
Acceptable disinfecting agents for FMD include Virkon™ or Citric acid (2g/L for use on clothing, clean footwear, equipment). More detailed information about decontamination for emergency animal diseases can be found in the AUSVETPLAN decontamination manual.
Decontamination information for primary producers
The regular cleaning and decontamination of agricultural equipment and machinery, especially when moved to a new facility or property, should be a mainstay of your farm biosecurity plan, regardless of external risks from pests or diseases. If you do not have a farm biosecurity plan, it is strongly recommended to put one in place. More information on farm biosecurity planning can be found on the webpage Farm Biosecurity.
Important note – FMD is not in Australia, however in the interest of public information the details below are specific to FMD, in terms of chemical use. Biosecurity Tasmania recommends use of a more general disinfectant for business-as-usual farm operations (such as sodium hypochlorite, Virkon™ or F10).
For use in disinfection activities specifically related to FMD, Citric acid (30g/L for footbaths & 2g/L for general use) or Virkon™ would be the best options, as defined in the AUSVETPLAN decontamination manual.
Agricultural equipment, machinery and vehicles
- In a designated wash bay or other washdown facility, remove any large clumps of mud, dirt, or other organic material.
- Thoroughly washdown equipment or machinery with a high-pressure washer. High pressure washers that can use hot water and detergents are even better.
- Once clean, consider using a disinfecting agent for FMD on ‘high-risk’ areas of your equipment or machinery (such as tires or tracks, wheel arches, any areas which may come into contact with livestock or transfer pests and disease to other parts of your property).
- Always follow label instructions, including safety information and wetting time.
- Visitors should wear clean, protective clothing and visibly clean boots when arriving at your property.
- You may consider having visitors use dedicated footwear that doesn’t leave your property (gumboots for example).
- Disinfectant for FMD can be applied to boots with visibly clean tread, via a foot bath or foot mat.