A woman who pulled over to help out after a truck carrying 100 lab monkeys crashed is concerned she may have picked up an illness after one of the animals spat at her.
Michelle Fallon, from Danville in Pennsylvania, says she’s been experiencing ‘pink eye’ symptoms since the incident earlier this month.
Fallon was driving along behind the truck when it crashed, leaving numerous animal crates all over the road. Some of the crates smashed and three macaques managed to escape and go on the run, but were later captured and euthanised.
The rest of the monkeys, which came in from Mauritius that day, have since been accounted for.
Speaking to WBRE, Fallon said she became alarmed after she discovered officials had warned the public not to approach the escaped monkeys as they could be carrying infectious diseases.
She contacted the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and was told to take immediate precautions, Fallon has since had a rabies vaccine and has been taking antiviral medication.
She told the news outlet: “I thought I was just doing the right thing by helping.
“I was close to the monkeys, I touched the crates, I walked through their feces so I was very close. So I called to inquire, you know, was I safe?”
Since the incident, Fallon says she has experienced a number of symptoms, including developing pink eye - an inflammation of the eyeball - and a cough.
Posting on Facebook, she said likened her symptoms to those associated with Covid-19.
She wrote: “What a day! I tried to help out at an accident and was told there were cats in the crates. So I went over to pet them only to find out it's monkeys. Then I noticed that there was three in each, with some completely broken, so I knew four had got away,'
“I came home to go to bed and my aunt ran into a news crew and she found out not to get too close to the monkey. Well, I tried to pet one. I touched the crates and walked in poop.
"I was told meet the police at the scene to talk about exposure.
“I spoke with the police and a woman from the CDC. I am getting a letter and I'm very low risk for I don't know what yet. But my symptoms are covid symptoms. Like seriously. A day from hell!”
Fallon visited a hospital where she was told by medics to closely monitor her health for the next month in case she develops any infectious diseases.
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