West Nile Virus Continues To Spread Throughout San Bernardino County

By Staff Reports

(Victor Valley)– The state laboratory has confirmed additional West Nile Virus (WNV) activity within the area served by the County of San Bernardino’s Mosquito and Vector Control Program. There is confirmation of the disease in the valley, mountains, High Desert, and Colorado River Basin so far this season.

Three dead birds (in Redlands, San Bernardino and Upland) and six sentinel chickens (five in Needles and one in Yucaipa) have tested positive for WNV. Additionally, three samples of mosquitos (one in Needles, one in the Wineville Basin in the Fontana/Ontario flood control channel, and one in the Day Creek Basin in the Rancho Cucamonga flood control channel) were WNV-positive. As announced in a press release last week by the Department of Public Health, a Victorville resident was hospitalized and has now recovered from WNV.

Because of these additional positive indicators of WNV, people should assume WNV is present throughout the region and take safety precautions accordingly.

It is very important that property owners remove all sources of stagnant water from their property. San Bernardino County residents with pools are urged to keep them clean. Mosquitoes will breed in stagnant water sources and green pools. Residents can play a role in preventing WNV from further spreading in our county by eliminating all sources of stagnant water. Please report green pools and other sources of mosquito breeding to the County of San Bernardino’s Mosquito and Vector Control Program at (800) 442-2283.

As the Labor Day holiday weekend approaches, many people will be enjoying outdoor activities. It is important for them to take safety precautions to avoid being bitten by mosquitos. San Bernardino County residents can protect themselves and their families from WNV by following these simple steps:

·        Drain or Dump – Remove all standing water around your property where mosquitos lay eggs such as birdbaths, green swimming pools, ponds, old tires, buckets, clogged gutters, or even puddles from leaky sprinklers.

·        Dawn and Dusk – Avoid spending time outside when mosquitos are most active.

·        Dress – Wear shoes, socks, and long pants and long-sleeved shirts that are loose-fitting and light-colored.

·        DEET – Apply insect repellent containing DEET according to manufacturer’s directions.

·        Doors – Make sure doors and windows have tight-fitting screens. Repair or replace screens that have tears or holes to prevent mosquitos from entering your home.

The California Department of Public Health encourages the public to participate in the West Nile Virus surveillance program, by reporting dead birds or squirrels to the State West Nile Virus toll-free hotline at (877) WNV- BIRD, or online at www.westnile.ca.gov.

For more information, contact the County of San Bernardino Department of Public Health, Division of Environmental Health Services at (800) 442-2283 or visit our website at www.sbcounty.gov/dph/dehs.

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