SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. —The Shelby County Health Department has confirmed the presence of West Nile virus in two local zip codes.
According to the agency, the mosquitoes were located in the 38115 and 38118 area codes, prompting them to increase their efforts to control mosquito breeding in those areas. So far, crews have sprayed these sites and even set out traps to capture and kill adult mosquitoes.
But they still need your help. They asked that all residents take the following precautions around their homes:
- Clean rain gutters and downspouts
- Discard old tires or store inside where rain water cannot collect inside of tires
- Discard tin cans, buckets – any container that might collect water
- Empty and refill pets’ water bowls at least every few days
- Empty, clean and refill birdbaths, “drip plates” underneath flower pots and small wading pools weekly.
So far, no human cases of the West Nile virus have been confirmed.
Here are some ways that you can protect yourself:
- Wear long pants and long-sleeve shirts when working or playing outside, especially in the evening and at night
- Wear DEET-containing mosquito repellants. Follow label directions
- Install or repair windows and door screens.
Last year, four people contracted the virus in Shelby County and three of them died.