West Nile virus infection from a mosquito bite in an area of the Moreno Valley that is infested requires pest control sprayed over 146 hectares, vector control officials said Friday.
WNV infection was confirmed in Riverside County last week, according to the California Department of Health.
The county’s Department of Environmental Health has scheduled “ultra-low volume” insecticide sprays at two adjacent locations between 5 a.m. and 7 a.m. Wednesday.
Agency spokesman Brent Casey said the first target area will be near Celebration Park, which joins Cactus Avenue to the north, JFK Drive to the south, Moreno Beach Drive to the east and Moreno Beach Drive to the west adjoins Oliver Street.
Casey said the second destination is a 30-acre space bounded by Ridge Crest Park Golf Course to the north, JFK Drive to the south, Pete Dye Street to the east, and Moreno Beach Drive to the west.
When spraying against mosquitoes, chemicals that are approved by the US Environmental Protection Agency are used. Pesticides are emitted as mist that is distributed by machines anchored to the back of pickup trucks.
Officials recommended that residents stay indoors while it was in operation and keep the windows closed for at least 15 minutes after the trucks had left.
In addition to the most recent case, two other West Nile virus infections were documented nationwide this year. A total of 58 WNV infections were registered nationwide, the largest number in Northern California according to the CDPH. There have been two WNV-related deaths – in Los Angeles and Orange counties.
Mosquitoes typically become carriers of the virus after feeding an infected bird, and can then transmit the potentially deadly strain to animals and humans. The elderly and those with weakened immune systems are among the most vulnerable.
Symptoms may never appear, but can include fever, headache, nausea, body aches, rashes, and swollen lymph nodes.
Southern California mosquito season generally runs from May to October.
To reduce exposure to mosquitoes with WNV, residents are encouraged to:
– Spend as little time outdoors as possible in the morning or evening light when mosquitoes are usually around;
– Wear trousers and long-sleeved shirts when doing outdoor activities in mosquito-prone locations;
– use insect repellent;
– ensure that door and window grilles are properly installed to keep insects out; and – remove standing water other than pools that have been properly treated with chemicals.
Anyone with concerns should contact the Department of Environmental Health at 951-766-9454.