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State Senator

Saud Anwar

Representing East Hartford, Ellington, East Windsor and South Windsor

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Senator Anwar Shares Safety Tips, Pest Control Scheduling Amid Risk of Eastern Equine Encephalitis

With increased local risk of contracting the virus Eastern Equine Encephalitis, also known as EEE after the confirmation that a mosquito in South Windsor was infected with it, State Senator Saud Anwar (D-South Windsor) advises residents of the 3rd Senate District to take precautions and protect themselves. While rare in humans, this year has seen increased EEE activity state-wide, emphasizing the need to take precautions. According to the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, a mosquito trapped on Burgess Road tested positive for the virus on Sept. 17.

While normally considered rare, with an average of seven cases reported per year, EEE, can be seriously life-threatening, according to the DPH. However, there are many ways to lower risk of contracting EEE, with the most prominent being preventing mosquito bites. The DPH recommends taking the following precautions to reduce risk of EEE:

  • Use insect repellent. This product, when used as directed, can protect all individuals from insect bites.
  • Cover up when outside, wearing long sleeves and long pants.
  • Prevent insects from entering your home using air conditioning, window screens or door screens.
  • Limit outdoor exposure of infants and children.

Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control advises that mosquitos are most active in the early morning and evening. If possible, limit time outdoors during those periods of time. The EEE threat will remain active until nightly temperatures drop low enough for frost, which generally occurs in early-to-mid October.

Due to the increased risk of EEE, several local towns and schools have additionally made adjustments to regular schedules to keep residents safe. According to news reports, South Windsor already started spraying pest repellants in local parks and may administer the repellants around schools. The town also announced that all outdoor town facilities and parks will close daily at 5:30 p.m. until the “first hard frost of the season,” and that town and education officials consulted the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection to determine effective treatment for parks and schools. The Parks Department announced it will treat standing water and detention basins in town in addition to planned mosquito spraying.

Other towns across the state have already worked to use pest repellants and reschedule outdoor activities to earlier in the day to avoid exposing students during periods of high insect activity. For more information, please contact your local town hall.

 

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