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BREAKING NEWS: West Nile Virus Detected in Shelby County Mosquito Control Activities Scheduled

Star Staff Reports

shelby-county-sealMEMPHIS, TN – The Shelby County Health Department has received confirmation of mosquitoes infected with West Nile virus within ZIP code 38116. This is the first positive mosquito pool found within Shelby County in 2016.

Since March, the Shelby County Health Department’s Vector Control Program has treated areas by applying larvicides to standing bodies of water. These actions are consistent with the Health Department’s efforts to be proactive in decreasing the adult mosquito population. Larviciding is the practice of applying an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) registered insecticide to areas where mosquito breeding has been confirmed and is the most effective way of eliminating mosquito populations.

As an additional precaution, the Health Department will conduct mosquito control activities, including truck-mounted spraying (adulticiding) of EPA-approved insecticides, weather permitting*, in portions of specific ZIP codes according to the following schedule:

Monday, June 6th 

8:30 p.m. – 11:30 p.m.

ZIP Codes: 38116, 38118, 38130, 38131, 38132

Tuesday, June 7th 

8:30 p.m. – 11:30 p.m.

ZIP Codes: 38127, 38053

 

Wednesday, June 8th  

8:30 p.m. – 11:30 p.m.

ZIP Codes: 38116, 38109

Thursday, June 9th  

8:30 p.m. – 11:30 p.m.

ZIP Codes: 38116, 38118

 

New feature: Citizens can now view the exact boundaries of each scheduled spray. Please visit http://www.schdresponse.com/content/mosquito-control-activity-schedule. New maps will be added weekly to reflect updated schedules.

Truck mounted spraying only effectively kills adult mosquitoes that are currently flying at the time the insecticide is released. Because of this, residents are highly encouraged to be vigilant as it relates to controlling mosquito populations around their homes and businesses. Citizens are encouraged to practice the 4 D’s:

·        DEFEND yourself by using insect repellent. Follow label instructions.

·        DRESS in long sleeves and pants, loose and light colored clothing when outdoors.

·        DUSK/DAWN stay indoors during this time to avoid mosquitoes when they are most active

·        DRAIN standing water and install or repair window screens

Individuals with chronic health problems such as asthma or other lung conditions may want to remain indoors during the time of spraying. Citizens who do not want their residences to be sprayed should contact the Health Department’s Vector Control Program at (901) 222-9715.

Humans can catch the West Nile virus through being bitten by an infected mosquito. Although West Nile virus can occasionally cause severe disease, most human infections are mild, resulting in fever, headache and body aches that last only a few days. Symptoms of severe disease include a high fever, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma or convulsions. Persons over age 50 and those with compromised immune systems are at higher risk of severe disease. They should especially be careful to avoid mosquito bites.

* To ensure the insecticide is most effective, the scheduled spraying will be canceled if any of the following weather

   conditions are present for the majority of the schedule spray time:

·        Greater than a 65% chance of rain

·        Wind speeds 11mph or greater

·        Temperature less than 60 degrees Fahrenheit 

Follow @SCHDResponse for the most up-to-date cancelations of any scheduled sprayings.

A copy of the 2015 WNV report can be found at http://shelbycountytn.gov/index.aspx?NID=2404

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