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Aerial Spraying for Mosquitoes Begins Sept. 10; Board of Health Recommends All Outdoor Activities End at Dusk

For Immediate Release: 9/10/2019 2:08 pm

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) has informed city officials that aerial spraying for mosquitoes is scheduled to begin this evening, Tuesday, September 10, between 7:15 p.m. and 4:30 a.m. in specific areas of southeast Worcester County, including portions of Worcester that are at risk for EEE virus.

Spraying will continue over several evenings and the schedule is dependent on weather and may change. For the latest information and to see a map of the spray area, please visit www.mass.gov/dph. Residents are urged to call the Central Massachusetts Mosquito Control Project with questions at 508-393-3055. A full press release from MDPH is available here.

No health risks are expected during or after spraying. There are no special recommendations to follow but residents can reduce exposure by being inside during the spray.

As a precaution, the City of Worcester Board of Health has made a recommendation that all outdoor activities taking place at municipally owned facilities end at dusk until the first hard frost of the fall. This includes all Worcester Public Schools athletic events as well as all youth leagues and organizations within the city. The Worcester Public Schools will release an updated football schedule when it has been finalized.

Below is the schedule of recommended cancellation times for outdoor events from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health:

Weekly Dusk Schedule:

  • Week of September 8 - 7:15 p.m.
  • Week of September 15 - 7 p.m.
  • Week of September 22 - 6:45 p.m.
  • Week of September 29 - 6:30 p.m.
  • Week of October 6 - 6:30 p.m.
  • Week of October 13 - 6:15 p.m.
  • Week of October 20 - 6 p.m.
  • Week of October 27 - 6 p.m.

The public is urged to practice the Five D’s of Prevention: Avoid being outdoors during DAWN and DUSK, when mosquitoes are most active; DRESS in long-sleeved clothing; use insect repellent with DEET; and DRAIN any standing water from around your home.

Tips for Avoiding Mosquito Bites:

  • Be Aware of Peak Mosquito Hours - The hours from dusk to dawn are peak biting times for many mosquitoes. Consider rescheduling outdoor activities that occur during evening or early morning. Otherwise, take extra care to use repellent and protective clothing.

  • Clothing Can Help reduce mosquito bites. Although it may be difficult to do when it’s hot, wearing long-sleeves, long pants and socks when outdoors will help keep mosquitoes away from your skin.

  • Apply insect repellent when you go outdoors. Use a repellent with DEET (N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide), permethrin, picaridin (KBR 3023), IR3535 or oil of lemon eucalyptus [p-methane 3, 8-diol (PMD)] according to the instructions on the product label. DEET products should not be used on infants under two months of age and should be used in concentrations of 30 percent or less on older children.

Mosquito-Proof Your Home:

  • Drain Standing Water - Limit the number of places around your home for mosquitoes to breed by either draining or getting rid of items that hold water. Check rain gutters and drains. Empty any unused flowerpots and wading pools, and change water in birdbaths frequently. All property should be maintained to prohibit the formation of stagnant pools of water, which may attract and harbor mosquitoes and other insects. Properties with these conditions can be reported to the Department of Inspectional Services via the City’s customer
    service center at 508-929-1300.

  • Install or Repair Screens - Keep mosquitoes outside by having tightly-fitting screens on all of your windows and doors.

Additional Resources:

City of Worcester
Customer Service Line
Monday - Friday
7:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.
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