Amidst a second phase of wide ranging foot-and-mouth controls, the government announced that the disinfection measures introduced for British visitors will also apply to the French. However, a flight from France flew into Palma yesterday with none of its passengers being disinfected, exposing a loop-hole in the foot-and-mouth controls and potentially causing the local authorities some embarrassment. The Spanish Airport Authority AENA in Madrid said that all French passengers flying into Spain have to go through the same procedure as the British, but Palma airport said last night that, while 4'500 passengers from Britain were all disinfected, passengers on the flight from Metz in France were not because it flew in via Switzerland, where it stopped over at Basel. In principle all the passengers on the flight were Swiss, and the controls do not apply to them. But there is still the doubt as to whether there were any French on the flight or not, Palma airport said. So, while a number of stores specialising in British products are starting to witness panic buying, the foot-and-mouth controls cannot guarantee that foot-and-mouth will not reach the Balearic, according to local offocials. It does appear clear that if it does, it is unlikely it will come from Britain as British imports are being subjected to rigorous controls and restrictions. So much so that a shipment of British pies has been impounded in Palma and is awaiting the all clear. There are fears that stocks of the British banger are running thin as the Balearic authorities claim they are taking every precaution possible to stop the disease from reaching the islands.
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