Due to a recent positive test for West Nile virus, the Richardson Health Department will conduct ground spraying, according to a news release.

Two sprayings are planned Oct. 4-5 in an area bordered by Coit Road to the east and Cottonwood Creek on the west, and between Campbell Road south to Arapaho Road. The health department will conduct the activity beginning at 9 p.m. each night and conclude by 4:30 a.m. the following day, weather permitting.

The gist

Spraying for the area was announced after health department staff were notified of a positive test for the West Nile virus in one of Richardson’s mosquito traps. Testing for the traps began on a weekly basis in April and is conducted year-round, according to the news release.

Per information released by the city, the two sprayings in targeted areas with positive tests are scheduled to mitigate the spread of mosquito-borne diseases, such as the West Nile or Zika viruses.

This year, no human cases of mosquito-borne disease have been recorded in the city to date, said Greg Sowell, Richardson director of communications. Dallas County Health and Human Services data includes three positive tests in mosquito traps in the 75080 ZIP code, six in 75081 and three in 75082. At least three positive tests of West Nile virus in mosquitoes in the Collin County portion of Richardson have been reported, according to Collin County Health Care Services, which has only reported one human case countywide.

The context

In Dallas County, there have been 21 confirmed cases of West Nile virus in humans, which is more than double the amount last year, according to Dallas County Health and Human Services. Spokesperson Christian Grisales previously told Community Impact that the higher case count this year could be attributed to a number of factors, but it’s “pretty hard” to say definitively. Possible reasons include a higher number of people enjoying outdoor activities and a lower number of people using bug repellent.

What else?

To help protect against mosquitoes and mosquito-borne diseases, residents are encouraged to follow four steps:
  • Drain standing water around the home.
  • Use insect repellent containing DEET.
  • Avoid being outdoors at dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active.
  • Dress to protect yourself with long sleeves and pants to reduce skin exposure.
For more information on the city’s mosquito program, visit the health department’s webpage.

Cecilia Lenzen contributed to this report.