In 2015, inspections of 382 animal transports carrying about 719 000 animals were undertaken. The largest group of the inspected animals were poultry (almost 701 000 birds). The number of inspections had decreased slightly from the previous year, when 418 transports were inspected. Most of the inspections were carried out by official veterinarians in conjunction with the unloading of the animals at the abattoirs. Regional veterinary officers also inspected transports, for example on the road and at the point of departure, in addition to these for the first time document checks for international transports were carried out.
Most of the inspections were targeted at cattle, poultry and pig transports. A total of 34 transports lasting over eight hours were inspected. The average duration of the transports was about 3,5 hours and the longest transport lasted for 26,5 hours. Non-compliance with the animal transport regulations were observed in 39 animal transports in total, which is about 10 % of the inspected vehicles. The number of non-compliances had dropped compared to the previous year (12 % in 2014). All in all, there were a total of 104 non-compliances in 2015, as several breaches were observed during the same inspection of some of the transports.
Over half of the non-compliances were due to inadequate documentation
The most common non-compliances were mainly the same as in previous years. Most of the individual breaches were related to the requirements for transporter authorization, the driver’s certificate of competence and transport documentation (54 in total).The second most common non-compliances were related to the condition and safety of the vehicle and the additional requirements for long-distance transports (28 in total). The third most common non-compliances were related to transport practices and space requirements for the animals (10 in total). Non-compliances related to the animals being fit for travel and the ability to put down injured animals were discovered in five transports. No breaches were found as to the requirements for water and feeding, travelling and resting times.
Horse and reindeer transports and animals being transferred for rearing on another farm were also inspected
A total of 39 horse transports were inspected. Shortcomings were detected in about 18 % of these transports. All of the breaches were due to a lack of permits, certificates of competence and/or transport documents. The proportion of non-compliances with respect to horse transports was clearly lower than the previous year (36 % in 2014).
The reindeer transports were inspected at the point of departure, which is where the animals are initially loaded into the vehicle, and at the abattoirs. A total of 7 transports were inspected. No non-compliances were discovered in these inspections.
Non-compliances were found in three (18%) of the 17 inspected transports of animals being transferred for rearing on a different farm. In all these three cases non-compliance was due to inadequate documentation. The proportion of non-compliances noted in transports of animals between farms was slightly lower than the previous year (23 % in 2014).
The supervisory authorities have to intervene in cases of non-compliance
If the supervisory authority discovers non-compliances when inspecting the transport, the authority has to take the measures required by the legislation on animal transports. Most commonly, the supervisory authority orders the transporter of the animals to correct the non-compliances within a set timeframe. The authorities took administrative measures on 36 % of the inspections where breaches had been noted, this is more often than previous year (24 % in 2014). On the non-compliances where no administrative measures were taken, in 11 cases authorities gave instructions to correct the breaches and in ten cases documentation breaches were corrected on the inspection or documentation- and license breaches were promised to be fixed in the hearing. On behalf of five non-compliances no explanation for the lack of authority measures were found on the reports.