Lab monkey on the run after truck crashes sparks fears it was ‘infected’

A truck crash in the US involving the transportation of around a hundred monkeys to a laboratory has sparked infection fears after a woman who came in contact was warned over diseases.

The test monkeys were on their way to a laboratory in Florida when the truck crashed into a garbage truck on Friday near Danville, Pennsylvania, with four of the primates escaping.

The incident allowed four monkeys, confirmed to be macaques, the chance to make a break for it as they managed to escape from their containers.

According FOX 56 Wolf TV, three monkeys were captured and "humanely euthanized according to American Veterinary Association guidelines" but the reports only sparked further concerns.

The incident has fuelled reports of the monkeys carrying an infection after a woman was warned as she stopped to help the animals, believing they were cats.

Michele Fallon, from Danville, told FOX 56 Wolf TV that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said she should monitor her health for any type of symptoms of an infectious disease after being close to them.

She said: “I have anxiety, so I just know I'm going to be a nervous wreck for the next 31 days."

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Police previously advised members of the public to not actively look for the animals and to not attempt to catch it or come in contact with it.

No further information on why these instructions were given but residents were asked to call the police if they did see the macaque.

Writing on Twitter, an account run by State Troopers Andrea Pelachick and Lauren Lesher, gave an update on the incident.

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They wrote: “There is still one monkey unaccounted for, but we are asking that no one attempt to look for or capture the animal.

"Anyone who sees or locates the monkey is asked not to approach, attempt to catch, or come in contact with the monkey. Please call 911 immediately.”

The message from the troopers prompted a number of users to comment on the post with many concerned others whether the monkey was “infected” with something.

State Troopers Pelachick and Lesher’s account later tweeted that all the monkeys had since been found.

According to a New York Times report, the species can cost more than £7,400 ($10,000) and were used as test subjects for the Covid-19 vaccine.

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