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Last Updated: Tuesday, 20 December 2005, 18:53 GMT
Timeline: South Wales E.coli outbreak
A day-by-day account of the south Wales E.coli outbreak, detected in September 2005.

Saturday 10 September: The first cases of E.coli are reported.

Friday 16: National Public Health Service for Wales is notified of cases and declares an outbreak.

Sunday 18: Seven linked cases confirmed by Rhondda Cynon Taf and Merthyr councils.

Monday 19: Cases rise to 23 and officials warn of further rise.

Tuesday 20: Cases rises to 41 in 19 schools as school canteens ruled out as source.

The E.coli O157 strain is potentially fatal

Wednesday 21: 56 cases in 25 schools and outbreak linked with Bridgend food supplier John Tudor and Son.

Thursday 22: Cases up to 68 as health officials move to quell public fears.

Friday 23: Official inquiry ordered; cases reach 75.

Saturday 24: Parents call for inquiry to be fully public; 108 cases in 31 schools.

Sunday 25: First Minister Rhodri Morgan pledges transparent inquiry; 115 cases in 32 schools.

Monday 26: Number of cases rises to 117; Welsh Health Minister Brian Gibbons says he believes the "peak is over".

Tuesday 27: Cases up to 122, but officials say outbreak in decline.

Mason Jones
Mason Jones died from E.coli poisoning

Wednesday 28: Assembly sets up cross-party committee to decide type of inquiry; cases reach 144.

Thursday 29: Cases reach 152; John Tudor and Son of Bridgend releases statement saying a second test for E.coli at its premises is negative.

Friday 30: Cases reach 156; one new school is affected - Mountain Ash Comprehensive.

Tuesday 4 October: Mason Jones, five, dies at Bristol Children's Hospital. Children's minister Jane Hutt pledges 'no holds barred' inquiry. New cases are still being confirmed but other suspect cases are taken off the total, leaving 157 in 42 schools.

Wednesday 5: Police confirm there will be an official investigation after the death of Mason Jones.

Thursday 6: First school closes after suspected case at Glenboi primary.

Glenboi Primary School
Glenboi Primary School was closed after cases were detected

Friday 7: Officials deny closure of Glenboi Primary School is a policy U-turn. Meeting held between health officials and parents at the school where home test kits for E.coli are issued. The premises of meat supplier John Tudor and Son of Bridgend, who have been linked to the outbreak, are sealed off by police.

Sunday 9: Number of cases at 157. Health officials say it is still clear that the majority fell ill before control measures were in place.

Tuesday 11: There are fears the E.coli outbreak has spread to an old people's home after a worker contracted the illness. A number of elderly people at the Ty Clyd home in Bargoed have also been tested.

Monday 17: Funeral of five-year-old Mason Jones, who died in the outbreak, is held in Deri, near Bargoed.

Thursday 27: Meat supplier John Tudor and Son of Bridgend appeals in court against the council order which forced it to close. The High Court judge in Swansea reserves his ruling and says the firm may learn next week if it can resume trading.

Tuesday 1 November: Number of cases reaches 161. Sharon Mills, the mother of E.coli victim Mason Jones, says lessons must be learnt from his death.

Saturday 5: Abercynon Infants School in Rhondda Cynon Taf is closed after four cases are found in pupils. The source is not known. Public health officials revise the number of cases to 159. The number of schools affected stands at 42.

Wednesday 9: Food safety expert Professor Hugh Pennington, who carried out an inquiry into an E.coli outbreak in Scotland in 1996 which killed 17 people, is chosen to head the Welsh assembly's inquiry into the south Wales cases.

Thursday 10: Abercynon Infants School in Rhondda Cynon Taf re-opens. Only pupils who have been confirmed as clear of E.coli are allowed to return to the school.

Sunday 13: Puffins private nursery in Brecon is closed after cases of E.coli are detected there, but subsequent investigation reveals there is no connection with the south Wales outbreak, where the number of cases stands at 168.

Thursday 24: A prohibition order against John Tudor and Son of Bridgend is quashed, but the firm will not be able to resume trading until officials are satisfied its premises are safe.

Monday 12 December: John Tudor and Son of Bridgend resumes trading.

Tuesday 20: Health officials declare that the outbreak is over.


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