The Santa Barbara County Fair is taking steps to ensure visitors who come into contact with the animals at the fair do not become ill.
The fair has been making regular announcements over the loudspeakers throughout the Santa Maria Fairpark, reminding people to wash their hands after touching the animals.
This comes after one child died and several others got sick from E. coli after coming into contact with animals at the San Diego County Fair.
The Santa Barbara County Fair is taking place now through Sunday, July 14.
The California Mid-State Fair, which takes place July 17-28 at the Paso Robles Event Center, is also taking steps to prevent the spread of illness between animals and fair visitors.
The fair is implementing some new safety measures, including requiring all pigs entered in the fair to be vaccinated against swine flu. Last summer, the San Luis Obispo County Public Health Department reported that at least two people were diagnosed with the flu after being in close contact with pigs at the fair.
SLO County Public Health is offering these additional tips for preventing the spread of illness at the fair:
- Enjoy food and beverages outside the animal area
- Leave strollers, pacifiers, bottles, sip cups, and toys outside the animal area
- Always supervise children around animals
- Avoid close face-to-face contact with animals
- Wash your hands after petting animals or touching anything in the areas where animals are housed. When you leave animal areas, wash your hands even if you did not touch the animals