Aerial mosquito spray operation in Houston area scheduled after flooding

Source: Xinhua| 2017-09-14 04:58:15|Editor: yan
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HOUSTON, Sept. 13 (Xinhua) -- The state and local health departments of Texas in south U.S. will launch an aerial attack against mosquitoes on Thursday evening.

According to a press release by the Harris County Public Health (HCPH) on Wednesday, northern and southern swaths of Harris County, where Houston is located, will be sprayed beginning Thursday evening as part of an effort to control mosquitoes in the aftermath of flooding caused by Hurricane Harvey.

The rain left behind by Hurricane Harvey has created large areas in Harris County where mosquitoes can lay their eggs.

To address increasing numbers of mosquitoes and the risk they pose to the recovery effort and public health, a U.S. Air Force Reserve stationed in San Antonio, about 320 km west of Houston, will fly C-130 cargo planes to conduct the aerial spray operation, and it may take more than one day.

The operation will focus on large swaths of northern and southern Harris County where rapid development in the past 30 years replaced vast grasslands with suburban lawns that can provide breeding grounds for mosquitoes.

According to the press release, the insecticide, Dibrom (EPA-approved), is routinely used for aerial spray operations to combat mosquito-borne disease and will be used during the spray operation in Harris County. Dibrom is considered safe for the environment and is applied by licensed applicators.

For residents concerned about exposure during the aerial spray operation, HCPH recommends individuals stay indoors during the evening aerial application in the treated areas as a precaution.