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Allegheny County Health Department will be spraying parts of Munhall and Homestead for mosquitoes on Wednesday night, a spokeswoman said.
Recent samples of mosquitoes taken from the boroughs have tested positive for West Nile virus. The ACHD will treat those neighborhoods using a truck-mounted, "ultra low volume" sprayer between 8 and 10 p.m. Aug. 5.
The treatment is intended to decrease the mosquito population and minimize the risk of transmission of the virus. West Nile virus can make some people severely ill and in rare cases causes severe neurological illnesses.
There have been no human cases of West Nile virus reported in Allegheny County so far this year, the health department said.
Spraying will be targeted between East 10th and East 16th Avenues as well as neighborhoods adjacent to Homestead Cemetery. In the event of rain, the treatment will take place the following day, on August 6, during the same hours.
The product used will be a new mosquito pesticide called Zenivex, according to the health department. It kills adult mosquitoes, but is very safe and harmless to people and pets, the spokeswoman said.
ACHD officials urge the public to protect themselves from mosquitoes by getting rid of standing water in yards and neighborhoods, using insect repellent on exposed skin and minimizing time spent outdoors, especially at dawn and dusk when mosquitoes are most active.
When used as directed, insect repellent is the best way to protect yourself from mosquito bites. The risk of infection is highest for people who work outside or participate in outdoor activities because of greater exposure to mosquitoes.
About 20 percent of those people who become infected with West Nile virus develop a fever along with other symptoms such as headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea or rash. Most people with these symptoms will recover completely, and can recover on their own.
Less than 1 percent of people infected with the virus develop severe symptoms of neurologic illness caused by inflammation of the brain or surrounding tissues. Anyone who believes they, or someone they know, has West Nile virus should consult a healthcare provider for evaluation and diagnosis.
Originally published August 04, 2015.