Tonight, August 16 starting at 10 p.m., parts of Dallas will receive aerial mosquito spraying in response to the West Nile virus outbreak. The mayor made this decision yesterday pursuant to his emergency powers, and the council did not vote on the matter.
The area to be sprayed tonight includes all of East Dallas north of I-30, Downtown, Uptown, Turtle Creek, the Park Cities, and Oak Lawn neighborhoods (see map, below). During the aerial spraying, avoid being outside, close windows and consider keeping pets inside while spraying occurs. Additional information can be found on the city’s website. Please pass on this information to your neighbors.
For people concerned about exposure during aerial spraying, health officials suggest the following precautions:
- Minimize exposure. Avoid being outside, close windows and consider keeping pets inside while spraying occurs.
- If skin or clothes are exposed, wash them with soap and water.
- Rinse homegrown fruits and vegetables with water as a general precautionary measure.
- Cover small ornamental fish ponds.
- Because the chemical breaks down quickly in sunlight and water, no special precautions are suggested for outdoor swimming areas.
The pesticide product is called Duet, which is labeled and approved by the EPA for use in outdoor and residential areas. The active ingredients are in the same chemical family as products currently being used for ground spraying in the Dallas area. The product will be applied at very low dosages – less than an ounce per acre – by small, twin- engine aircrafts flying at approximately 300 feet above ground overnight.
As always, the first line of defense to prevent infection of the West Nile Virus is to avoid getting bitten in the first place. We urge citizens to be proactive by employing the 4-Ds of personal prevention:
DEET – use insect repellents that contain DEET, or any other EPA approved insect repellent
DRESS – Wear long, loose and light-colored clothing outside during dusk and dawn hours.
DRAIN – Remove all areas of standing water. Change water in wading pools, pet dishes and birdbaths several times a week.
DUSK/DAWN – Protect yourself during dusk and dawn hours.