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West U Urges Residents to Protect Themselves Against West Nile Threat | InstantNewsWestU.com

West U Urges Residents to Protect Themselves Against West Nile Threat

August 23, 2012

In light of the recent news stories concerning mosquitoes throughout Harris County and across the state, as well as the recent numbers of reported West Nile Virus activity and fatalities, the City of West University Place would like to provide some additional information to residents.

Who Is Most At Risk?

People over 50 years of age have the highest risk of developing a severe illness because as we age, our bodies have a harder time fighting off disease.

People with compromised or undeveloped immune system are also at increased risk; however, anyone can get the virus.

Less than 1 percent of the people who get bitten will become infected.

What Can I do to Reduce My Risk of Getting WNV?

  • Use mosquito repellent when outdoors. Use according to the label – less than 10% DEET for children. Picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus and IR3535 are also recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
  • Eliminate standing water which can be found in old tire, cans and blocked gutters.
  • Do not sweep lawn clipping into storm sewer or drains.
  • Make sure screen on windows and doors are in good condition.
  • Maintain swimming pools. Empty, invert of cover swimming pools when not in use.
  • Keep birdbaths clean. Change the water at least once a week, more often in the summer.
  • Wear long pants and long sleeved shirts (preferably light colored) when outdoors during dusk and dawn.

City Mosquito Spraying

West U currently sprays for nuisance mosquitoes every Monday night from 10 p.m. – 5 a.m. starting in April and ending in October. In cases where we have higher nuisance mosquito activity the city will add an additional spraying on Thursday night.

The city does not monitor for WNV or St. Louis Encephalitis, but that is the responsibility of the Harris County Public Health & Environmental Services.

Harris County Mosquito Control

HCPHES operates hundreds of monitoring stations throughout the county, as well as testing live and dead birds for St. Louis Encephalitis and West Nile Virus.

The Culex mosquito is the primary transmitter of both, which is a different type of mosquito that resident typically experience, otherwise known as nuisance mosquitoes. Once they determine that either disease is present in an area, they will begin activity treating the immediate up to three times per week and surrounding areas at a minimum once a week resources permitting.

HCHES utilizes different methods for controlling the Culex Mosquito population by ground and aerial spraying to treating standing water and catch basins.

Below are some links to information maintained by HCPHES.

Main Website: http://www.hcphes.org/hcmosquitoctrl/

Informational Publications:
• http://www.hcphes.org/hcmosquitoctrl/west_nile.pdf

InstantNewsWestu Staff

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