West Nile Virus West Nile Virus Activity is already occurring in some parts of the country. As nice weather sets in, develop good warm weather habits to protect yourself, your family, and your community from West Nile Virus. Most recently, West Nile Virus was detected in a few mosquitoes in Pico Rivera and in Harbor City. Fight the Bite
When dealing with West Nile Virus, prevention is your best bet. Fighting mosquito bites reduces your risk of getting this disease, along with others that mosquitoes can carry. Take the common sense steps below to reduce your risk:
• Clean out the mosquitoes from the places where you work and
Get double protection: wear long sleeves
during peak mosquito biting hours, and spray DEET repellent directly onto your
• Help your community control the disease.
The chance that any one person is going to become ill from a single mosquito bite remains low. The risk of severe illness and death is highest for people over 50 years old, although people of all ages can become ill.
Avoid Mosquito Bites
Apply insect repellent containing DEET (Look for : N,N-diethyl-meta-
toluamide) to exposed skin when you go outdoors. Even a short time being outdoors can be long enough to get a mosquito bite. Always use repellent in
accordance with the manufacturer’s written instructions and heed all warning labels. Be aware of any sensitivity your coworkers may have to DEET.
LACCD EH&S SAFETY ADVISORY 06/18/04 Clothing Can Help Reduce Mosquito Bites
When possible, wear long-sleeves, long pants, and socks when outdoors. Mosquitoes may bite through thin clothing, so spraying clothes with repellent containing permethrin or DEET will provide extra protection however, some employees may be sensitive to a repellant or its vapors. Never apply repellents containing permethrin directly to skin. Do not spray repellent containing DEET on the skin under your clothing. Always use such products in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. If you are sensitive, consult your personal physician first. Drain Standing Water
Mosquitoes lay their eggs in standing water. Limit the number of places around your home for mosquitoes to breed by getting rid of items that hold water. Employees should report the presence of standing water to Facilities for abatement.
Install or Repair Screens
Some mosquitoes like to come indoors. Keep them outside by having well-fitting screens on both windows and doors. Offer to help neighbors whose screens might be in bad shape. Employees should report damaged screens
or doors that do not close well or doors lacking effective weather stripping to Facilities for consideration.
Helping Your Community Report dead birds to your local authorities
Dead birds may be a sign that West Nile Virus is circulating between birds and the mosquitoes in an area. Over 130 species of birds are known to have been infected with West Nile Virus, although not all infected birds will die. It’s important to remember that birds die from many other causes besides West Nile Virus. By reporting dead birds to state and local health departments, you can play an important role in monitoring West Nile Virus. Such as the case in Harbor Regional Park, in which a dead bird was found to have been infected with West Nile Virus and where additional tests on mosquitoes were positive for the disease. Report any observations of dead animals, especially birds, to your local Facilities or College Sheriff’s Office.
Mosquito Control Programs
Where mosquito infestation is known or suspected, the Facilities Gardening Department is responsible to apply pest control measures under the general direction of the Facilities Manager, including keeping all records of pesticide use, in accordance iwh the Hazard Communication and Pest Control Program procedures. Where pest control measures involve the use of industrial chemicals, the Facilities Department will take the steps necessary to warn employees who may be affected by spraying pesticides and perform the work outside of the assigned employee’ normal work hours.
Inspect Playground Equipment Frequently
Children enrolled in your Child Development Center are not likely to share your awareness of the hazards associated with mosquitoes and their habitats. Again, promptly report to Facilities any unusual observations for investigation.
More questions about mosquito control? A source for information about pesticides and repellents is the National Pesticide Information Center, which also operates a toll-free information line. You may also contact the local state jurisdiction or equivalence of the federal CDC at (213) 240-7941. The local jurisdiction is the Acute Communicable Disease Program however, West Nile Virus is not considered to be an acute communicable disease (800) 858-7378.
LACCD EH&S SAFETY ADVISORY 06/18/04
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