The NYC Department of Health (DOH) announced on Monday afternoon that 15 different Brooklyn neighborhoods will be sprayed with a pesticide that kills mosquitoes possibly carrying the West Nile virus.
“To reduce mosquito activity and the risk of West Nile virus, the Health Department will spray pesticide from trucks in parts of Brooklyn,” says the DOH.
The spraying is scheduled for Wednesday, Aug. 19, between the hours of 8:30 p.m. and 6 a.m. the next morning. In case of bad weather, the spray trucks will instead come through on Thursday, Aug. 20, during the same hours.
Above is a two-part map of the Wednesday-night spray area. (Click the second and third thumbnails on top of the mosquito photo.)
Affected locations are also listed below.
- Parts of Bath Beach, Bay Ridge, Bensonhurst, Dyker Heights, Gravesend, Fort Hamilton and New Utrecht. (Parts of 11204, 11209, 11214, 11219, 11223 and 11228.) Bordered by 86th St, 21st Ave, Bay Ridge PKWY, 15th Ave, and 64th St, Fort Hamilton Pkwy and 83rd St to the North, The Atlantic Ocean to the West and the South; Coney Island Creek and Shell Road to the East.
- Parts of Georgetown, Mill Basin, Flatlands, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Marine Park, Midwood and Mill Island. (Parts of 11210, 11229, 11234 and 11235.)Bordered by Avenue K to the North; Ocean Ave, Avenue X, and Nostrand Ave to the West; the Belt PKWY to the South; and Belt PKWY and Paerdegat Basin to the East.
To prevent mosquitoes from spreading the West Nile virus during hot summer months, the DOH typically treats standing-water sites with ”non-chemical larvicides” to kill larvae-stage mosquitoes — as well as a small amount of chemical pesticides, to kill adults.
Health officials also spray some neighborhood streets with aerial doses of Anvil 10+10, a synthetic pesticide. (The treatment planned for Brooklyn this Wednesday.)
So far this summer, there have been 18 rounds of neighborhood sprays, but this will be the first in Brooklyn.
Another map released by the DOH (fourth thumbnail, above) shows all the Brooklyn zip codes where “West Nile virus activity” has been detected: 11201, 11210, 11214, 11215, 11219, 11222, 11228, 11232, 11234, 11236 and 11238.
The DOH sometimes announces sprayings only a couple days in advance, so keep your eye on the summer spray schedule (or Patch!) for the latest.
Here’s what the DOH recommends you do during a spraying, “to minimize direct exposure”:
- Whenever possible, stay indoors during spraying. People with asthma or other respiratory conditions are encouraged to stay inside during spraying since direct exposure could worsen these conditions.
- Air conditioners may remain on, however, if you wish to reduce the possibility of indoor exposure to pesticides, set the air conditioner vent to the closed position, or choose the re-circulate function.
- Remove children’s toys, outdoor equipment, and clothes from outdoor areas during spraying. If outdoor equipment and toys are exposed to pesticides, wash them with soap and water before using again.
- Wash skin and clothing exposed to pesticides with soap and water. Always wash your produce thoroughly with water before cooking or eating.
On Sunday, the DOH announced that a male Brooklyn resident over the age of 60 had been diagnosed with West Nile virus — the first confirmed case in the city this summer.
The man tested positive for the mosquito-borne virus after he was ”hospitalized with viral meningitis,” says the DOH.
He has since been treated and discharged.
West Nile season in New York City typically lasts from July through October. A total of 318 New Yorkers have been diagnosed with the virus since its first appearance in the U.S. — in NYC, in fact — in 1999.
Most people infected with West Nile virus show no symptoms, says the DOH. Those who do, however, often complain of fever, headache, fatigue and body aches. Some also develop rashes or swollen lymph glands.
“Symptoms can last for as short as a few days, though even healthy people have become sick for several weeks,” says the DOH.
According to the New York Times, symptoms sometimes take two weeks to develop — ”but they may then be rapid and overwhelming.”