Updated safety advice following Amesbury incident

Updated safety advice following Amesbury incident

Published by The Spire FM News Team at 5:31pm 10th July 2018.

4 minute read

England's Chief Medical Officer has released more information.

"Nobody, adult or child, should pick up any foreign object which could contain liquid or gel."

That's the reiterated advice from agencies, as investigations continue into how Dawn Sturgess and Charlie Rowley came into contact with Novichok.

On Sunday (8th July), Dawn Sturgess passed away.

The Metropolitan Police have now launched a murder enquiry.


It is still not known to the public how Dawn and Charlie came into contact with the deadly nerve agent.

Paul Cosford, Medical Director at Public Health England, say's he understands the public will be worried but Novoichok isn't something you'll touch in everyday life.

"This isn't just something you'll be in contact with if you're on the grass or if you're sitting down having a picnic in the park.

"That's not how you would get exposed to a large dose of this."

Chief Medical Officer Dame Sally Davies, has this advice for people.

"I want to emphasise to everyone in the Salisbury and Amesbury area that nobody, adult or child, should pick up any foreign object which could contain liquid or gel, in the interests of their own safety.

"This in practice means do not pick up containers, syringes, needles, cosmetics or similar objects, made of materials such as metal, plastic or glass.

"This is particularly important as families are starting to prepare for their children’s summer holidays and so I am asking that people are extra vigilant.

"To be clear: do not pick up anything that you haven’t dropped yourself. 

"Life continues in Salisbury and Amesbury and I want to be clear that the overall threat to the public is unchanged and remains low."


Toxicologist Professor Alistair Hay says tiny doses can be lethal, and gives an idea of what the container may look like.

"A few mililitres would be sufficient to probably kill a good number of people and you could store that in a small ampoule, or it might be in a small container like for nail varnish."

On Monday (9th July) the man leading the investigation, Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu from the Met Police said he "can't offer guarantees" there won't be further contaminations.

Mr Basu, has reiterated advice from Public Health England that " the risk to general public at this time remains low."


Public Health England want to reiterate these bits of advice

  • Wash the clothing that you were wearing in an ordinary washing machine using your regular detergent at the temperature recommended for the clothing
  • Wipe personal items such as phones, handbags and other electronic items with cleansing or baby wipes and dispose of the wipes in the bin (ordinary domestic waste disposal)
  • Keep your items double-bagged and securely fastened, if they are dry-clean only (further details will follow)
  • Other items such as jewellery and spectacles which cannot go in the washing machine or be cleaned with baby wipes, should be hand washed with warm water and detergent and then rinsed with clean cold water.
  • Please thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water after cleaning any items.

You do not need to seek advice from a health professional unless you are experiencing symptoms.

Anyone with any information or that could assist the investigation is urged to call police on 0800 789 321.

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