Oswego County Announces New Test Results and Plans for Aerial Spraying

OSWEGO COUNTY – The New York State Department of Health has notified the Oswego County Health Department that more evidence of the Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) and West Nile (WNV) viruses was found in collections taken last week.

A pool in the town of West Monroe and another near the village of Central Square both tested positive for EEE. Two pools near the village of Central Square and another in the town of West Monroe each tested positive for WNV.

Aerial spraying is scheduled for Thursday night if weather permits. The area to be sprayed is the Toad Harbor / Big Bay Swamp area near the north shore of Oneida Lake. Specifically, the area includes about 10,000 acres within these boundaries: U.S. Route 11 in Central Square to the west, NYS Route 49 to the north, up to, but not including the village of Constantia to the east; and the shoreline of Oneida Lake to the south. Spraying will not take place over the waters of Oneida Lake.

Residents within the aerial spray boundaries will be notified of the aerial spraying by the Oswego County Hyper-Reach reverse 911 program. They are also advised to close windows and doors and keep them closed until 9 p.m.

If spraying is postponed due to weather conditions, residents will be notified through the news media and information will be posted on the Oswego County Web site at www.oswegocounty.com.

The Oswego County Health Department has received permission and permits required to conduct aerial spraying from the state Departments of Health and Environmental Conservation. The product Kontrol 30-30, which contains permethrin, will be applied in a diluted form.  The county has contracted with Duflo Spray-Chemical from Lowville to conduct the aerial spraying. The procedure is approved by the state Health Department and the Department of Environmental Conservation.

Residents in the spray area should stay indoors and keep windows and doors closed for one hour after the spraying. Residents are also advised to:

·  Keep pets indoors.

·  Close the vents on window air conditioners so that outside air doesn’t enter the home for one hour.

·  Remove outdoor toys, outdoor furniture, and clothing from the clothesline. Items left outdoors should be washed thoroughly with soap and water before using.

·  If you are driving through an area while spraying takes place, close your car windows and vents.

·  Cover gardens, or rinse homegrown fruits and vegetables thoroughly before cooking or eating.

The Oswego County Health Department reminds residents that personal protection measures are the most effective way to guard against mosquito bites.

People should follow these precautions:

Use insect repellent properly. Those that contain DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon eucalyptus are most effective but should be used with care. Read the product label and use according to package instructions.
Limit outdoor activities in areas where mosquitoes are most active and between dusk and dawn which is the peak mosquito biting time.
If you have to be outside, wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants, shoes and socks as weather permits.

In addition, residents can take these protective measures to minimize mosquito populations in and around their homes and properties:

Repair or replace all window and door screens to keep mosquitoes outside.
Reduce or eliminate all standing water from pails, recycling containers, wheelbarrows, wading pools, pool covers and similar water-holding containers.
Clear roof gutters, remove leaf debris from yards and gardens, and clean vegetation and debris from the edge of ponds.
Change the water in birdbaths and horse troughs twice a week.
For more information, call the Oswego County Health Department weekdays at 315-349-3547 or visit the New York State Department of Health’s Web site at http://www.health.ny.gov/diseases/west_nile_virus/fact_sheet.htm