Town of Arlington
Department of Health and Human Services
James Feeney, Acting Director of Health and Human Services
27 Maple St.
Arlington, MA 02476
For Immediate Release
Friday, Aug. 7, 2015
Media Contact: John Guilfoil
Contact: James Feeney
Arlington Health Department Asks Residents to Prevent Mosquitoes
ARLINGTON — The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) announced Thursday that West Nile Virus has been detected in a mosquito sample from the Town of Belmont. This announcement follows the detection of WNV in recent mosquito samples collected in the neighboring cities of Medford, Somerville and Cambridge. The Arlington Health Department urges residents to take action now to prevent the breeding of mosquitoes and to avoid mosquito bites by wearing repellent. While the mosquito samples collected in Arlington tested negative for WNV, Acting Director of Health & Human Services James Feeney reminds residents the threat of mosquito-borne illness remains as long as WNV is circulating in the area, and advises residents to take the following precautions:
Mosquito-Proof Your Home
- Drain Standing Water. Mosquitoes lay their eggs in standing water. Limit the number of places around your home for mosquitoes to breed by either draining or discarding items that hold water. Check rain gutters and drains. Empty any unused flowerpots and wading pools, and change water in birdbaths frequently.
- Install or Repair Screens. Keep mosquitoes outside by having tightly-fitting screens on all of your windows and doors.
Avoid Mosquito Bites
- Apply Insect Repellent when Outdoors. Use a repellent with DEET (N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide), permethrin, picaridin (KBR 3023), oil of lemon eucalyptus [p-methane 3, 8-diol (PMD)] or IR3535 according to the instructions on the product label. DEET products should not be used on infants under two months of age and should be used in concentrations of 30% or less on older children. Oil of lemon eucalyptus should not be used on children under three years of age.
- Be Aware of Peak Mosquito Hours. The hours from dusk to dawn are peak biting times for many mosquitoes. Consider rescheduling outdoor activities that occur during evening or early morning.
- Clothing Can Help Reduce Mosquito Bites. Wearing long-sleeves, long pants and socks when outdoors will help keep mosquitoes away from your skin.
WNV is most commonly transmitted to humans by the bite of a mosquito infected with the virus. There were six (6) human cases of WNV in 2014. While WNV can infect people of all ages, people over the age of 50 are at higher risk for severe infection. The Town of Arlington works to prevent the breeding of mosquitoes by treating all storm water catch basins in town, treating wetland areas and working with property owners to remove large sources of standing water such as abandoned swimming pools. Click here for more information about West Nile Virus.