Five Areas Scheduled for Community-based Spraying Sunday Night Lab

Communications Director

Eric Vreeland
evreeland@knoxvilletn.gov
(865) 215-3480

400 Main St., Room 654A
Knoxville, TN 37902

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Five Areas Scheduled for Community-based Spraying Sunday Night Lab

Posted: 09/11/2009
Knox County Health Department (KCHD) has received lab reports confirming the presence of West Nile Virus (WNV) in mosquitoes and a bird in three new areas of Knox County. Additional positive samples were identified at Milligan Street (East Knox) and the 4th Avenue area (I-275 area), which have been sprayed previously. Following national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention protocol, the affected areas will be sprayed to reduce the mosquito population and the risk of further WNV spread.

Spraying for all five areas will be on Sunday, Sept. 13 from 9 p.m. to midnight. Follow up spraying will be on Sunday, Sept. 27. Signs have been erected in the affected areas to alert residents who are asked to stay inside during spraying.

New areas to be sprayed include:

Carter Community Park - All streets in Carter Mill Subdivision, Trentville Ridge and Trentville Creekside Condos and Carter Elementary/Middle/High School campuses.
 
Alcoa Highway - South of Maloney Road, east of Alcoa Highway, north of Power Drive and west of South Oaks Subdivision (includes all of South Oaks subdivision).
 
Fort Sanders - South of Grand Avenue, east of the railroad tracks, north of Cumberland Ave and west of World's Fair Site (11th Ave.). A crow tested positive for WNV in this area.)
 
"When temperatures start cooling in the evenings later this month, mosquito activity should slow down," said Ronnie Nease, KCHD director of Environmental Health. "But until then, we advise everyone to remain vigilant about protecting themselves from mosquito-borne illness. When you go outside when mosquitoes are prevalent, wear protective clothing such as long pants, long-sleeved shirts and socks, and use a mosquito repellant containing DEET." (NOTE: More mosquito control tips are below for your reference.)

To address the public health concerns caused by mosquitoes, Knox County Health Department (KCHD) conducts a mosquito control program during the summer months. Every year, as the weather begins to warm, KCHD public health professionals begin trapping mosquitoes around the county, testing batches weekly for West Nile Virus, a mosquito-borne disease which can infect humans, horses and birds. WNV affected areas are sprayed with an approved mist when needed to reduce the mosquito population. Application is recommended between the hours of 9 p.m. to midnight when mosquitoes are most active. From early in the spring until the first frost, larvicides also are used in areas with standing water to prevent mosquito proliferation.

TIPS FOR CONTROLLING MOSQUITOES

Eliminating breeding areas is an important factor in controlling the mosquito population. KCHD urges the public to reduce breeding sites around their homes by following these tips:

Dispose of, regularly empty, or turn over any water holding containers on your property such as tires, cans, flowerpots, or trashcans. Drill holes in the bottom of recycling containers that are left outdoors. Make sure roof gutters drain properly and water doesn't stand in them. Change the water in birdbaths at least once a week. Turn over plastic wading pools and wheelbarrows when not in use. Keep swimming pools, outdoor saunas and hot tubs clean and properly chlorinated; Remove standing water from pool covers.

TIPS FOR PROTECTING YOURSELF FROM MOSQUITO-BORNE ILLNESS

It also is important for residents to take necessary precautions against West Nile Virus during outside activity, either by proper clothing or insect repellant. The best way to protect yourself and your family is to keep mosquitoes from biting you. During mosquito season (generally April through October), take the following precautions:

Limit outdoor activities between dusk and dawn, if possible, since this is the time of greatest mosquito activity. If you are outside when mosquitoes are prevalent, wear protective clothing such as long pants, long-sleeved shirts and socks. Use a mosquito repellant that contains DEET (the chemical N-N-diethyl-meta-toluamide); and Follow the directions on the label. If you are concerned about using repellent products on children you may wish to consult a health care provider for advice or contact the National Pesticide Information Center (NPIC) through their toll-free number at 1-800-858-7378 or npic.orst.edu.

More information on the mosquito control program and the treatment schedule are available by calling 215-5200. KCHD also provides the West Nile Virus Fact Sheet and the Public Health Fact Sheet discussing insect bites and repellents. All informational materials may be reproduced and distributed as needed. A Mosquito control technician is available to discuss mosquito control at community groups or neighborhood association meetings.

Knox County Health Department (KCHD) is committed to promoting public health policies and practices that safeguard and improve quality of life for all residents. KCHD offers an array of resources, including medical and dental services, family planning, disease surveillance and control, emergency preparedness, air quality management, environmental services, food preparation oversight in public places, special nutritional programs for women with children and much more. For more information, visit www.knoxcounty.org/health.