State warns public against West Nile Virus

NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - As summer approaches, reminders to take precaution against mosquito carrying viruses, begin.

The Texas Department of State Health Services is warning Texans about the threat of West Nile Virus.

"It's a mosquito-borne virus and it's going to be here from now on and it looks like it will never go away," said Tommy Wheeler of environmental health services of Nacogdoches County. "It's in all counties throughout Texas. Last year there was a total of 14 deaths throughout Texas."

The best defense against West Nile Virus is mosquito control. In Nacogdoches, spraying has already begun in city parks and near daycares. By next week, a more aggressive spraying program will begin.

"We're going to try to spray between three in the morning and seven in the morning," Wheeler said.

There won't be any spraying in rural Nacogdoches County, but Wheeler has mosquito habitat spotters helping him out.

"The Nacogdoches County Road and Bridge Department as they're out and about doing their work, they come across an area that's a breeding ground within the right of way for mosquitoes they're eliminating those areas," Wheeler said.

Texas Department of Health Commissioner Dr. David Lakey is advising Texans to practice these four easy tips.

"Use insect repellant when you go outside," Lakey said. "Drain standing water. Wear long sleeves and pants at dawn and dusk and keep screens on doors and windows."

Health officers want to keep West Nile cases down, but they need your help to make it happen.

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