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Fogging to Suppress West Nile Virus Mosquitoes Scheduled in the Los Altos Area

SAN JOSÉ, CALIF.  - The Santa Clara County Vector Control District (SCCVCD) confirmed on August 3, 2012, that adult mosquitoes collected from the 94024 and 94040 ZIP code areas of the Cities of Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Mountain View and parts of the unincorporated area tested positive for West Nile virus (WNV).  The detection of mosquitoes infected with WNV has activated the protocol for mosquito fogging treatment in the surrounding area in an effort to prevent human cases.  Weather permitting, the ground fogging is scheduled for August 9, 2012, at 11:00 pm, and is planned to last for several hours. 
 
The fogging area is generally bordered by Rosita Ave., Glen Alto Dr., Arboleda Dr., Cuesta Dr., and Eunice Ave. on the north; Campbell Ave., La Prenda Rd., Quinnhill Rd., and Casa Mia Way on the west; Truman Ave., Malbarough Ave., Wessex Ave., Austin Ave., and Grant Rd. on the east; and 280 Freeway and Saint Joseph Ave. on the south.  A live map can be viewed at http://goo.gl/maps/uoyRA.
 
Scott Bourdon, Director of the Department of Environmental Health, notes that “While we're seeing a slow start to the WNV season this year, the detection of virus in mosquitoes (in this case one in 75 mosquitoes were infected) represents a direct risk of human infection.  Control of infected adult mosquitoes is an essential component of preventing human cases of WNV and other mosquito-borne encephalitis.” 
 
Information packets will be distributed in the fogging area notifying residents about the fogging operation.  As an added convenience, on August 8 and 9, staff from the Santa Clara County Vector Control District will be available during extended hours from 7:30 am to 7 pm via a dedicated phone line/voicemail (800-314-2427) to answer questions and provide information.
 
Transmitted by mosquito bites, WNV causes mild to severe flu-like symptoms such as fever, headache, body aches, and, in severe cases, significant neurological damage or even death.  The elderly and those with compromised immune systems are most susceptible.  Since the arrival of WNV to California in 2003, 3,146 people across the State have contracted the disease; 110 of those cases were fatal. So far this year there are 11 cases statewide, with one fatality. Last season, the District conducted four fogging operations in Santa Clara County, and there was one non-fatal human case which occurred near a WNV hot spot.
 
SCCVCD Community Resources Specialist, Mr. José Colomé said, “It’s important for residents to take precautions to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes whenever they are outdoors, especially during dusk and dawn. People can also help by draining standing water and reporting other sources of mosquito breeding such as neglected swimming pools”.
 
Some practical measures against mosquito bites are:
 
At home:
·DRAIN or DUMP standing water weekly since this is where mosquitoes lay eggs.  Check items such as flowerpots and planter bases, toys, cans, leaky water faucets and sprinklers, rain gutters, buckets, pools, ponds, and old tires.
·Make sure your DOORS and windows have tight-fitting screens. 
 
Outdoors:
·Limit outdoor activities during DUSK & DAWN to prevent mosquito bites.  Those are the times when the mosquitoes that transmit WNV are most active. 
 
If you need to go outside at dusk or dawn, or when in an area where mosquitoes are active:
 
·DRESS in long sleeve shirts and long pants, preferably of light colors.
·Apply insect repellent following label instructions.
 
Always contact the Vector Control District if you are being bothered by mosquitoes or know of a potential mosquito-breeding source.
 
Dead birds may indicate the presence of WNV, and a District bird sample lead to the current detection of virus in mosquitoes.  The District’s laboratory conducts in-house testing for WNV and other vector-borne diseases throughout the year.  The District asks Santa Clara County residents to report crows, jays, or birds of prey that have been dead for less than 48 hours and do not appear to have died because of an injury.  People who find those birds should call the State of California WNV hotline at 877-WNV-BIRD (2473) or at www.westnile.ca.gov
 
Residents can visit the District’s website at www.sccVector.org to view a map of the fogging zone, read the latest alerts about WNV activity in the County, request advice or services, or to subscribe for fogging announcements. 
 
For free assistance on mosquito control, WNV, or other vectors, residents can contact the District office by calling (408) 918-4770/(800) 675-1155 or fill out a service request online at www.sccVector.org.
 
Media Contact: Russ Parman, 408-593-6176(English); Noor Tietze,408-210-5773(English); José Colomé,408-210-5774(English and Spanish), Santa Clara County Vector Control District
Posted: August 07,2012