Officials watch for swine flu at Minn. State Fair

Health officials are paying close attention at the Minnesota State Fair for any signs of swine flu.

A strain of swine flu swept through fairs last summer, sickening over 300 people in a dozen states including Minnesota. This year, Minnesota Public Radio reports, 16 people have contracted influenza from pigs after visiting fairs in Indiana, Illinois and Ohio.

So far, Minnesota hasn’t had any cases, but most of the swine at this year’s fair will go home after 72 hours to reduce the chance of the disease taking hold and spreading.

Signs will be posted outside of animal buildings asking fairgoers to keep food, drinks, pacifiers, baby bottles and strollers out of the barns. People who’ve had a fever in the past seven days are asked to stay away.