Texas state authorities are anticipating an increase in the local mosquito populations as the floodwater starts receding. One of the effects of Harvey, the state has called in the U.S. Air Force to try and combat this potential source of illnesses before it sets in.
One of the Effects of Harvey Could Be the Increase in Mosquito-Borne Diseases
Beginning Wednesday, September 13, C-130 military planes from the U.S. Air Force commenced the aerial spraying of insecticides across Texas. According to reports, these will be spread along the state’s coastal regions.
Reportedly, Texas state authorities are looking to spray around six million acres with insecticides with help from the nation’s Air Force. Some three counties, Brazoria, Jefferson, and Chambers have already been treated.
Texas officials have been reported as declaring that most of the mosquitos that turn up in the mentioned areas aren’t disease carriers and that spraying will help protect cleanup crews from discomfort.
However, the spraying actions could very well be helpful in trying to prevent one of the possible effects of Harvey: the increase in mosquito-borne illnesses. As floodwaters recede, local mosquito populations are likely to increase because of the ensuing still water pools.
The Texas Health and Human Services posted a news update on its efforts of combating the effects of Hurricane Harvey. One of the sections specifically targeted the mosquito control actions being conducted by the state.
According to this: “During aerial spraying, a small amount of insecticide is sprayed over a large area, one to two tablespoons per acre. When applied according to label instructions by a licensed professional, it does not pose a health risk to people, pets or the environment.”
The statement continues by pointing out that, although people will likely prefer to remain inside and with their windows closed during these actions, this will not be strictly necessary.
U.S. Air Force-conducted aerial sprayings will be using naled, an ‘organophosphate category of insecticides’.
Image Source: Flickr