A West Nile virus infection from a mosquito bite in an area of Moreno Valley where infestations are present will require pest control spraying over a 146-acre space, vector control officials said Friday.
The WNV infection was confirmed in Riverside County in the last week, according to the California Department of Public Health.
The county Department of Environmental Health has scheduled “ultra-low volume” insecticide spraying in two adjoining locations between 5 a.m. and 7 a.m. Wednesday.
Agency spokesman Brent Casey said the first targeted area will be in the vicinity of Celebration Park, covering roughly 116 acres, bordered by Cactus Avenue to the north, JFK Drive to the south, Moreno Beach Drive to the east and Oliver Street to the west.
Casey said the second target will be a 30-acre space bordered by the Ridge Crest Park Golf Course to the north, JFK Drive to the south, Pete Dye Street to the east and Moreno Beach Drive to the west.
Anti-mosquito spraying involves the use of chemicals approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Pesticides are emitted as a mist dispersed from machines anchored in the backs of pickup trucks.
Officials recommended that during operations, residents stay indoors and keep windows closed until at least 15 minutes after the trucks have departed.
In addition to the most recent case, two other human West Nile virus infections have been documented countywide so far this year. Statewide, a total of 58 WNV infections have been recorded, the largest number of them in Northern California, according to the CDPH. There have been two WNV-related deaths — in Los Angeles and Orange counties.
Mosquitoes typically become carriers of the virus after feeding on an infected bird and can then spread the potentially lethal strain to animals and humans. Those at greatest risk include seniors and individuals with compromised immune systems.
Symptoms may never materialize, but can include fever, headache, nausea, body aches, skin rashes and swollen lymph nodes.
Mosquito season in Southern California generally spans May to October. To reduce exposure to mosquitoes carrying WNV, residents are urged to:
— spend as little time as possible outdoors at dawn or dusk, when mosquitoes are generally on the move;
— wear pants and long-sleeved shirts during outdoor activity in mosquito-prone places;
— use insect repellent;
— ensure door and window screens are fitted properly to keep bugs out; and
— get rid of standing water, aside from pools properly treated with chemicals.
Anyone with concerns should contact the Department of Environmental Health at 951-766-9454.