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Quarantine Facility in Australia

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    Racing Victoria Limited (RVL) operates the Quarantine Facility at Betfair Park, Sandown (SQF) which is the only privately owned and operated quarantine station in Australia. Located just 25km from Melbourne’s central business district, the facility has stabling for up to 22 horses in 5 separate stable complexes.

    Horses serving quarantine at SQF will have access to the following training tracks/surfaces;
    The Hillside Track
    • Grass racetrack 2086.94 metres in circumference
    • Straight is 491 metres, width is 30 metres
    • Horses will have access to the outside 5 to 10 metres

    Woodchip Track
    • Approximately 600m in length
    • 4 metres wide
    • Gradual uphill incline
    • An alternative training surface

    Pre-Export and Post-Arrival QUARANTINE
    The pre-export and post-arrival quarantine information described below is based on current requirements and is subject to change. Connections wishing to participate in the Spring Carnival should contact Racing Victoria Limited regarding the specific quarantine requirements which apply at the relevant time to the importation of their horses into Australia.

    Prior to travelling to Australia, horses from approved countries must serve a minimum 14 -days pre-export quarantine (PEQ) in approved premises.

    The premises must meet Australian Government Standards and be inspected and formally approved by the veterinary administration of the exporting country. Horses traveling to Australia must also comply with proscribed Equine Influenza (EI) vaccination schedules. A horse must have been vaccinated against EI on at least two occasions during the six months prior to commencement of PEQ and one EI vaccination must have been administered between 21 and 14 days prior to commencement of PEQ.

    Depending on the country of export, flight schedules and travel arrangements of other competitors, international horses competing in feature Group 1 races during the 2009 Spring Racing Carnival should expect to commence PEQ on the following dates.

    • BMW Caulfield Cup – between Sunday 6 and Thursday 10 September 2009

    • Tatts Cox Plate – between Sunday 13 and Thursday 17 September 2009

    • Emirates Melbourne Cup – between Sunday 20 and Thursday 24 September 2009.

    To determine exact travel and PEQ schedules, connections should contact Racing Victoria Limited or their shipping agent, at their earliest opportunity.

    SQF has two quarantine areas which operate as separate quarantine facilities. They are known as the Woodlands and Tabaret complexes. Both complexes have excellent security and stabling facilities which include well ventilated stables with secure storage areas, day yards, sand rolls, weighing scales and internal walking paths.

    All visiting horses must serve a minimum of 14-nights in Post-Arrival Quarantine (PAQ) before they will be permitted to leave the Quarantine Facility for external training or racing purposes (emergency situations excepted). Time served in quarantine can occasionally be affected by the arrival time of other horses. If horses serving PAQ have originated from different PEQ locations they may be required to spend a minimum of 21 nights in PAQ.

    When PAQ is completed, horses imported on a temporary basis remain under Quarantine Surveillance. While under Quarantine Surveillance, imported horses are not permitted to have contact with local horses except at time of competition. Should trainers wish to use an alternative training venue after completing PAQ, permission must first be obtained from the Australian Quarantine & Inspection Service (AQIS). By restricting contact with local horses, imported horses are able to return to their country of origin without further restrictions.

    Routine operations of the quarantine facility are based on the following:

    1. Access to the quarantine facility will only be given to approved persons (e.g. trainers, attendants and grooms).

    2. Approved persons will be issued with an electronic access card.

    3. All persons entering the quarantine station must read and understand the Standard Operating Procedures applicable to their role within the station. A Condition of Entry form must be signed to confirm adherence to these procedures.

    4. Entry to and exit from, the quarantine station is only permitted via the security building or dedicated shower hut. All authorised persons must complete the entry/exit log and register their electronic access card upon entering the facility.

    5. Unless otherwise advised by an official Quarantine Veterinarian, any person entering the quarantine station must shower prior to leaving the station.

    6. All clothing worn (excluding underwear) and equipment used in the station must remain in the station until the completion of PAQ.

    7. Prior to showering, all persons must sign the entry/exit log and promptly exit after showering.

    8. Contact with local horses or other animals is prohibited for the duration of PAQ.

    9. Contact with horses from the other quarantine compound at Sandown is prohibited.

    10. A daily health record is to be kept for all horses. This will involve taking and recording the rectal temperature twice daily and recording general health observations. Any abnormality (coughing, nasal discharge, poor appetite etc.) is to be immediately reported to a quarantine veterinarian.

    11. Access to the racetrack for training will only be allowed under the supervision of a quarantine officer. While horses have access to the racetrack, it will be considered to be an extension of the quarantine facility. Training times will generally be between 6.00 am and 7.30 am. Walking areas are available within the quarantine facility.

    12. Electronic security devices are installed within the quarantine facility and 24-hour CCTV surveillance is in place. A security guard will be on site 24 hours per day.

    13. To keep access to the quarantine facility to a minimum, it will be the responsibility of grooms etc. to keep the areas used by them clean and tidy.

    14. Breaches of quarantine rules may lead to penalties being imposed on offenders.

    High quality local feeds are provided on request. Details of feed types are available from RVL.

    Feed may be imported, however imported feed is subject to strict quarantine regulations including inspection and irradiation treatment. Trainers should be aware that irradiation may affect the palatability of certain feeds. For information concerning strategies which do not involve using irradiated feed (e.g. using local feeds and custom made feeds from local produce), please contact RVL.

    Quarantine requirements for processed feeds and feed ingredients of plant origin are in place and permits will be organised by your transport agent. Your transport agent will coordinate the application of permits for import – which will detail the producer of the feed, ingredients and how it was processed. Some trainers accustom their horses to local feel by administering it before leaving their country of origin to smooth the dietary transition.

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