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CDC: Monkeys posed a public health risk

CDC, Dept. of Health, and state police decided to "humanely euthanize" three monkeys after their escape from a truck crash last week.

MONTOUR COUNTY, Pa. — UPDATE: 

The woman who was in contact with a monkey may be experiencing symptoms. Click here to see that story.

Original story:

Newswatch 16 is learning more about the monkeys that escaped after a crash in Montour County.

Federal officials confirmed over the weekend that three monkeys were euthanized. Monday, they explained why.

It was a Friday rush hour fender bender many of us won't soon forget. 

A truck hauling 100 monkeys collided with a dump truck outside Danville, and three of the monkeys got out.

RELATED: Monkeys escape after crash near Danville

That set off an hours-long monkey hunt in the woods that included state troopers, the Pennsylvania Department of Health, and officials from the Centers for Disease Control.

The CDC later confirmed that the three monkeys were humanely euthanized when they were found.

"A little 3-pound monkey doesn't scare me, but why are they so concerned about it is what concerns me," Howie Lerch of Valley Township told Newswatch 16 Saturday.

Here's what the CDC tells us now about the monkeys:

They're a breed called macaques, and they arrived in the U.S. last week from Mauritius, a country in eastern Africa.

They were being taken from New York City to a CDC-approved quarantine facility. We do not know where the surviving monkeys will go after their quarantine.

The three that escaped posed a health risk to the public, CDC officials told us today. Macaques can pass deadly viruses to humans, so the state police, the Department of Health, and the CDC decided together that it was best to euthanize the animals. 

RELATED: CDC: Three monkeys caught and euthanized after crash near Danville

Newswatch 16 spoke to a woman who came in contact with some of the other monkeys right after the crash. She said the CDC asked her to watch out for cold symptoms. Newswatch 16 checked in with her today, and she hasn't had any.

The driver transporting the monkeys received a ticket from state police and continued on his way.

Watch more stories from the Danville monkey crash on YouTube. 

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