West Nile virus detected near LaPlace

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ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST PARISH – St. John Mosquito Control has detected a positive case of West Nile virus in the LaPlace area, parish officials announced.

Follow-up traps are being placed and will be analyzed for the presence of disease. The parish mosquito control traps throughout the parish on a regular basis and tests for mosquito-borne diseases.

According to parish officials, residents in the immediate area within a one to five block radius of the sampling site will receive information regarding the potential for infection in the neighborhood along with recommendations for protection and yard sanitation. Additional spraying will take place during the evening hours of this week, officials say.

Below are safety tips from parish officials that residents can use to protect themselves against mosquitoes:

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- If outside, wear a mosquito repellent containing DEET.

- Apply repellent on exposed skin and clothing - do not apply under clothes or on broken skin.

- Avoid perfumes and colognes when outdoors for extended periods of time.

- Make sure all windows and doors are tight-fitting and screens are free of holes • Eliminating standing water where mosquitoes breed.

- Dispose of tin cans, ceramic pots and other unnecessary containers.

- Turn over wheelbarrows, plastic wading pools, buckets, trash cans, children's toys or anything that could collect water.

- Check and clean roof gutters routinely, as they can produce millions of mosquitoes each season.

- Aerate ornamental pools or stock them with fish; water gardens can become major mosquito producers if they are allowed to stagnate.

- Clean and chlorinate swimming pools that are not being used.