Tags: Zika Virus | Zika | US | Miami | Beach | Spraying | Nalad

Miami Beach Spraying to Start Against Zika

Miami Beach Spraying to Start Against Zika

(Copyright DPC)

By    |   Tuesday, 06 September 2016 03:30 PM

Aerial spraying with the powerful insecticide Naled is set to begin Thursday as  the fight against the deadly Zika virus ramps up in touristy Miami Beach.

Miami Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez’s statement Tuesday that aerial spraying with Naled was to begin came as a reversal on the part of county, state and federal officials. The order was given because inspections had shown the city’s mosquito population rebounding over the Labor  Day weekend.  “This is the right and safe thing to do at this time,” said Gimenez in a written statement.

The order came after consultation with the county, the State of Florida Health Department, the Agriculture Department, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Gov. Rick Scott, Gimenez said.  Also, over the weekend, six more homegrown Zika cases were found there, the Florida State Health Department confirmed Tuesday.

Last month, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention declared Miami Beach one of Florida’s two hot zones, which means local mosquitos are transmitting the virus there. The other zone is Wynwood, a trendy area of Miami. These two areas are the only such Zika zones in the U.S. so far, the officials say.

Although these are the only zones where homegrown Zika is being actively transmitted, there are thousands of travel-related cases of Zika cases in the U.S. The Zika virus is considered deadly because it can cause the deadly birth defect microcephaly in babies born to infected mothers and is also linked with neurological disorders in adults.

The use of Naled greatly concerns Miami Beach official, who had hoped to avoid it by starting to spread BTi from ground trucks early Tuesday morning. BTi is considered a more environmentally safe insecticide than Nalaed. Although approved for use in the U.S. Naled has been banned in the European Union.

Miami Beach officials may not be giving up the fight.  City Commissioner Michael Grieco has been leading the fight against Naled and City Mayor Philip Levine has called for an emergency meeting Wednesday. 

The Florida Department of Health reported Tuesday that 577 people in the state have been infected with travel-related Zika, and there are 56 homegrown cases. There are also 80 pregnant infected with the virus.

The Zika virus can make anyone sick for up to a week with the following flu-like symptoms:

  • Fever.
  • Rash.
  • Joint pain.
  • Red eyes.

There is no vaccine or treatment for the virus, making prevention essential. Health experts recommend taking the following precautions:

  • Wear long-sleeved shirts and pants outdoors.
  • Eliminate standing water where mosquitoes breed.
  • Use repellents to keep mosquitoes away.
  • Use air conditioning and window screens if possible.
  • Call your health care provider if you are at risk of infection.

Last month, Consumer Reports released new rankings of mosquito repellents that offer the best protection against Aedes Aegypti mosquitoes, the type that carry the Zika virus. They tested products containing deet, plantlike ingredients lemon eucalyptus and picaridin. The most effective products:

  • Sawyer Fisherman's Formula Picaridin.
  • Natrapel 8 Hour, with 20 percent picaridin.
  • Off! Deepwoods VIII, w/25 percent deet.
  • Repel Lemon Eucalyptus.

The magazine also recommended skipping products made with natural plant oils, such as California Baby Natural Bug Blend (a blend of citronella, lemongrass oil, cedar oil, and other ingredients) and EcoSmart Organic, (which includes geraniol, rosemary oil, cinnamon oil, and lemongrass oil).

Women who are pregnant or breast feeding can safely use deet, picaridin, lemon eucalyptus, and IR3535, according to the EPA.

Other tips for using insect repellents safely and effectively:

  1. Apply repellents sparingly, and only to exposed skin or clothing.
  2. Don’t apply repellents over cuts, wounds, irritated skin, or after shaving.
  3. When applying to your face, spray first on your hands, then rub in, avoiding your eyes and mouth.
  4. Don’t let young children apply repellents themselves
  5. Don’t use near food, and wash hands after application and before eating.
  6. At the end of the day, wash treated skin with soap and water, and wash treated clothing in a separate wash before wearing again.

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Officials have ordered aerial spraying to start Thursday in Miami Beach in an effort to eradicate mosquitoes that are spreading the Zika virus.
Zika, US, Miami, Beach, Spraying, Nalad
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2016-30-06
Tuesday, 06 September 2016 03:30 PM
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