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Where and how bad?

Don't panic!   Firstly ascertain where the vehicle is : At the port, at the delivery point or stopped elsewhere, such as at one of the HACCP Control Points operated by Oakland Invicta?

Identify who has detected the stowaway(s), how many were found, roughly how long they have been inside the trailer and what damage appears to have occurred.

There are likely to be bodily fluids in or around some products.

Protect the goods and the staff

The first reaction is often "it will have to be condemned" but our experience shows that, in most cases, 85+% of the load can be recovered. The infected goods need to be identified, quarantined and disposed of in a way that protects your brand integrity.

There is a risk of cross contamination - this is a particularly significant risk if the load is not assessed and handled in a secure, approved and isolated environment - away from all other goods and handled by staff that are (a) trained and experienced in such matters and (b) properly equipped to avoid risk to their health.

Own the problem!

Protecting your brand and reputation is essential. Our advice would be not to leave it to the transport company to sort out. You need to be sure that contaminated goods are correctly identified and that confidentiality is maintained throughout (that should include 'no unauthorised photography'). 

By owning the problem you can control the remedial process thus giving you quicker access to good stock and secure destruction of ruined stock.

Make sure you obtain a comprehensive BEFORE / AFTER report and have full traceability.  

Best practice

We recommend that the entire vehicle is unloaded and disinfected. The products can then be individually assessed, clean products reloaded and infected goods quarantined. The trailer should be re-sealed when this operation is complete. 

You should have the option to supervise the entire operation or, if that is not practical, you should at least examine the quarantined goods prior to authorised destruction.

We recommend that the whole process takes place in the UK and certainly that no 'condemned' goods are allowed to leave the secure quarantine other than for destruction locally. You should be provided with (or obtain) a Certified Proof of Disposal.

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