CANADA - The Vice President Operations with Steve's Livestock Transport, says the challenges posed by Porcine Epidemic Diarrhoea (PED) have highlighted the importance of the role of transport workers in ensuring biosecurity, writes Bruce Cochrane.
Founded by Steve Brandt in 1987, Steve's Livestock Transport is the largest commercial livestock transportation company in North America.
Rick Peters, the Vice President Operations with Steve's Livestock Transport, says biosecurity has always driven the business and PED has heightened the level of awareness of the importance of biosecurity and the need for training.
Rick Peters-Steve's Livestock Transport:
In terms of preparedness, the key roles are the way the trailer is washed, the way it comes through our wash bay, through the wash process, the way it's dried or baked.
Baking was the result of the PED virus.
That's what heightened our resolve.
It's also key that our drivers understand protocols on farms, both protocols on farms and before they get to the farm.
Their cabs need to be cleaned after every load, including the steering wheels for example, or the pedals or the floor mats, just as a thorough cleaning and disinfecting.
They use Lysol disinfectant wipes to do that.
I can't stress enough the effort that needs to be put into educating drivers, educating staff, educating our wash bay personnel.
It's important that they understand why they're washing this trailer, why this trailer that's hauling livestock needs to be as clean as it needs to be.
The training part is not only on how to physically wash a trailer.
It's also training on understanding why we do what we do.
Mr Peters says this approach to biosecurity has been a team effort involving producers, processors and transporters and has been incredibly effective.
He notes, in total, there have been only five cases of PED in western Canada and right now there are none.
ThePigSite News Desk