SECTION 59.12. Carcass Disposal Requirements  


Latest version.
  • (a) Definitions:

    (1) "Animal" means livestock, exotic livestock, domestic fowl, or exotic fowl.

    (2) "Executive Director" means the Executive Director of the Texas Animal Health Commission

    (3) "Air Curtain Incineration" means a mechanical process of incineration by which super-heated air is continuously circulated to enhance combustion.

    (4) "Burial" means interment of a dead animal below the natural surface of the ground.

    (5) "Burning" means the act of consuming or destroying by fire with or without the use of an accelerant.

    (6) "Composting" means the biological decomposition of organic matter under controlled conditions.

    (7) "Dead Animals" means carcasses and parts of carcasses from animals that are dead from a disease.

    (8) "Dead Animal Emergencies" means those situations involving dead animals that may require extenuating disposal measures as determined by the Executive Director.

    (9) "Decomposition" means the decay of dead animals under natural conditions.

    (10) "Digestion" means a process by which organic matter is hydrolyzed.

    (11) "Disposal" means the management of a dead animal.

    (12) "Incineration" means the controlled and monitored combustion of dead animals for the purposes of volume reduction and pathogen control.

    (13) "Person" means any individual, association, partnership, firm, joint stock company, joint venture, trust, estate, political subdivision, public or private corporation, state or federal government department, agency or instrumentality, or any legal entity, which is recognized by law as the subject of rights and duties.

    (14) "Rendering" means the process or business of recycling dead animals and animal by-products.

    (15) "Sanitary Landfill" means a solid waste disposal site permitted or approved by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

    (b) Carcass Disposal. A person who is the owner or caretaker of livestock, exotic livestock, domestic fowl, or exotic fowl that die from a disease listed in §161.041 of the Texas Agriculture Code, or who owns or controls the land on which the livestock, exotic livestock, domestic fowl, or exotic fowl die or upon which a diseased carcass of a dead animal is exposed to other animals, shall dispose of the carcass in the manner required by the commission under this section.

    (c) Executive Director Authorization. The commission authorizes the executive director to issue Orders regarding the disposal of carcasses of livestock, exotic livestock, domestic fowl, or exotic fowl as necessary to eradicate or control the disease as well as to protect the livestock of this state. The Executive Director may also publish directives, guidelines and standards to be followed for carcass disposal in general events involving a diseased animal.

    (d) Disposal of Diseased Carcass. A person who is the owner or caretaker of livestock, exotic livestock, domestic fowl, or exotic fowl, if ordered by the executive director, shall dispose of the carcasses under the direction of authorized agents of the commission and in accordance with all appropriate legal standards and requirements.

    (e) Disposal Methods Determined by the Executive Director. The Executive Director may determine the appropriate method of disposal for animals that die of infectious or contagious diseases or agents as listed in §161.041 of the Texas Agriculture Code or any other high consequence disease.

    (1) Rendering. If a licensed and approved rendering facility accepts the dead animal, rendering is an approved method of disposal.

    (2) Burial. Dead animals shall be buried to such a depth that no part of the dead animal shall be nearer than three (3) feet to the natural surface of the ground. Every part of the dead animal shall be covered with at least three (3) feet of earth. The location of a burial site shall be in compliance with any applicable set backs for sanitary or public health reasons.

    (3) Disposal in an Approved Sanitary Landfill. Arrangements shall be made with a city, county, regional, or private landfill official in order to dispose of a dead animal in a city, county, regional, or private landfill.

    (4) Composting. Composting of dead animals shall be accomplished in a manner approved by the Executive Director.

    (5) Digestion. Digestion of dead animals shall be accomplished in a properly designed and sized dead animal digester approved by the Executive Director.

    (6) Incineration.

    (A) Incineration of dead animals shall be accomplished in an approved incineration facility, or by a mobile air curtain incinerator at a site approved by the Executive Director.

    (B) The incineration shall be thorough and complete, reducing the carcass to mineral residue.

    (7) Burning. Any person who is the owner or caretaker of animals that have died from anthrax, or who owns or controls the land on which the animals have died, is responsible for assuring that the carcass of each animal is set on fire and burned until it is thoroughly consumed as found in §31.3 of this title (relating to Disposal).

    (8) Decomposition. Animals that die on private or state rangeland from causes other than significant infectious or contagious diseases or agents may be left to decompose naturally provided their location is not in violation of another legal requirement.

    (9) Wavier of Requirements by the Executive Director. The Executive Director may grant variances from the requirements on a case-by-case basis.

    (f) Dead Animal Emergencies. Dead animal emergencies are those situations involving dead animals that have been determined by the Executive Director to require extraordinary disposal measures.

    (1) Situations Requiring Extraordinary Disposal Measures. These situations include, but are not limited to, the following:

    (A) Situations where one (1) or more animals die of an infectious or contagious disease or agent that may pose a significant threat to humans or animals;

    (B) Situations wherein the number of dead animals is large enough to require extraordinary disposal measures.

    (2) Executive Director to Determine Disposal Methods. The Executive Director may employ exceptional or extraordinary methods of dead animal disposal as necessary to protect the health and welfare of the human and animal populations of the state of Texas. Such methods may include, but shall not be limited to:

    (A) Open burning;

    (B) Pit burning;

    (C) Burning with accelerants;

    (D) Pyre burning;

    (E) Air curtain incineration;

    (F) Mass burial; or

    (G) Natural decomposition.

Source Note: The provisions of this §59.12 adopted to be effective December 19, 2007, 32 TexReg 9339