Joe Morrissey, 518-457-0752, Joe.Morrissey@agriculture.ny.gov
Gaming Commission - 518-388-3415
May 08, 2013
NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets and State Gaming Commission Issue Update Regarding Equine Herpes Virus at Vernon Downs Racetrack
New York State Department of Agriculture & Markets Commissioner Darrel J. Aubertine and State Gaming Commission Acting Executive Director Robert Williams today issued the following update:
Three horses stabled at Vernon Downs Raceway are known to be infected with a strain of the Equine Herpes Virus Type 1 (EHV-1). One of these horses was humanely euthanized. EHV-1 is a viral infection which can cause respiratory disease, abortion in broodmares, death in newborn foals and can also be a very serious neurologic disease. The virus does not affect people.
As of May 8, no other horses at New York racetracks or additional horses at Vernon Downs have been reported to have EHV-1.
The Department of Agriculture and Markets has implemented a 28-day quarantine period. No horses will be permitted to ship in or out of Vernon Downs until 28 days after the Department of Agriculture and Markets has determined that the infected horses stop showing symptoms of EHV-1. Barn number 4 and barn number 2 at Vernon Downs are under strict quarantine, and the only persons permitted to enter these barns are horse caretakers assigned to those barns. Horses in these barns are prohibited from racing or training on the track. These barns will remain under strict quarantine until 28 days after the last signs of EHV-1 are seen in their populations.
Based on these procedures, the Gaming Commission has authorized Vernon Downs to resume live racing on Friday, May 10 with unaffected horses that are currently on the grounds of the racetrack.
The quarantine procedures are subject to change as both the Department of Agriculture and Markets and the New York State Gaming Commission continue to monitor the situation at Vernon Downs closely and may modify restrictions based on conditions on-site and/or new information.
For more information on EHV-1, visit the American Association of Equine Practitioner's Web site or check USDA APHIS' brochure on the virus.
2013 Press Releases