CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Health officials confirmed mosquitoes carrying West Nile Virus are in Massachusetts. And while risk levels are low for people and animals, you’re advised to take common sense precautions.
DeJuan Brown of Springfield told 22News, “I have a porch at my house, and I like to sit out there with kids. They play sometimes out there when it gets a little, when it gets to dusk. We’ll use bug repellent, but if it gets too bad, we’ll go inside.”
Like it or not, mosquitoes are back, and with them, mosquito-borne illnesses. This week, a mosquito sample tested positive to West Nile Virus in the Worcester County Town of Clinton, about one hour east of Springfield.
The state Department of Public Health tracks cases of mosquito-borne illness all across the state. Last summer, the DPH found two cases of Eastern Equine Encephalitis in horses in Hampshire County and one human case of West Nile Virus in Hampden County.
So far in 2014, health officials have yet to find any human or animal cases, but you should still take precautions.
“Just use repellents they have out there. If you’re sitting out on the deck, use one of those candles that can keep things away,” Kate Yarymowicz of East Longmeadow said.
Cori Bishop of Agawam told 22News, “With the dog I always use Advantix because it does have mosquito repellent as well. Because they can come into the house with the dog, so we are always checking him for insects and all that type of stuff.”
Other tips include:
- Protect infants with mosquito netting on baby carriages.
- Make sure your window screens don’t have any holes.
- And remove any standing water from gutters and portable pools.
Health officials will continue to test mosquitoes all summer. Click Here for more information from the Health and Human Services.