Officials find West Nile virus, equine encephalitis in Norfolk


NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — Public health officials say nine mosquito pools have tested positive for West Nile virus and a sentinel chicken has tested positive for Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) in the city of Norfolk. 

Crews were sent to Berkeley and Campostella to fog the neighborhoods and mosquito control measures are in place, according to the Norfolk Department of Public Health. Fogging will continue around the city into next week. 

Pools from Fairmont Park, Lafayette Shores, Norfolk Industrial Park and Edgewater also tested positive for West Nile virus. 

The positive EEE sample was collected near the 1000 block of Indian River Road. 

Officials say most people who get bitten by these mosquitoes do not get sick and people who do get sick suffer a mild, flu-like illness. Citizens over the age of 50 who get bitten have a higher risk of getting a serious illness, such as meningitis. 

To reduce exposure to mosquitoes, the Virginia Department of Health recommends: 

•  Wear long, loose and light-colored clothing.
• If possible, limit outdoor exposure between dusk and dawn.
• Check window and door screens to ensure that mosquitoes cannot enter your home.
• Use insect repellants with DEET according to the manufacturer’s directions.
• Turn over or remove containers in your yard where water collects, such as old tires, potted plant trays, buckets and toys.
• Eliminate standing water on tarps or flat roofs.
• Clean out birdbaths, wading pools and swimming pools.
• Clean roof gutters and downspout screens

Norfolk Department of Public Health maintains a mosquito hotline for citizens by calling (757) 683-2914, option #4. 

West Nile virus and EEE were also found in Suffolk. 

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